“Marten lake”

Population: 496

A quick flight away from Yellowknife or a scenic 125-kilometre drive by ice road from Behchokǫ̀, this Tłįchǫ Dene community is set on the shore of huge, pristine Lac La Martre. The town is known for its monster pike and trout fishing, and for its migratory bird life. Less well known is the stunning Whatı̀ Waterfall – two thundering spillways with fine grayling fishing in the rapids below.


Location: 63°09′ N, 117°16′ W
Elevation: 269 metres
Population: 492
Name means: “Marten lake”
Name pronounced: "Wah-TEE"
Former name: Lac la Martre (changed in 1996)
Setting: On the southeast shore of Lac la Martre, in forested shield country, approximately 100 kilometres northwest of Behchokǫ̀
Languages: Tłı̨chǫ Yatıì, English
Ethnicities: Dene (Tłı̨chǫ)
Getting here: By air from Yellowknife, or by winter road from Behchokǫ̀
Founded in: This is the ancestral territory of the Tłı̨chǫ Dene. In 1773 a Northwest Company trading post was established here but closed in 1817. More than a century later a new trading post opened here, followed by a school in 1955
Come for: Indian Summer Daze, held every September, featuring a community feast, dance, hand-games tournament, canoe races, traditional games and a fishing derby
Best daytrip: To Nìı̨lı̨ı̨, an impressive twin-spillway waterfall on the Rivière la Martre, a short drive outside of town
Best expedition: Fishing for monster pike at the remote Lodge at Lac la Martre, north of town

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