Mackenzie River

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Gwi'eekajìlchit OR Tithegeh Chì’

This place name refers to a prominent cliff on the eastern side of Campbell Lake, in the Gwich’in Territorial Park outside of Inuvik. The cliff is visible from the Dempster Highway and, if you stand on top, it provides a spectacular view of the Mackenzie Delta. The first name refers to a time long time ago when people climbed this cliff to collect eagle feathers to fletch the ends of their arrows. The second name refers to the seagulls that used to nest along this cliff. There were so many that this cliff was described as being "white" with large seagulls.


Njoh Njii’ee

This name refers to a lobstick tree which once stood on a hill near the outlet of Gull Creek. These unique markers have long been used by the Gwich’in to mark important fishing locations, trails and other culturally important sites. According to Gwichya Gwich’in elder Hyacinthe Andre, the Gwich’in traditionally selected tall trees standing off by themselves for this purpose. The branches would be cut off, leaving only two branches in the middle on each side, giving the tree the appearance of having wings.


Thidyee Niinjuu

In the early 1950's, before Inuvik was built, the Roman Catholic brothers from the Aklavik Mission used to have a fish camp here. They fished here for the residential school and the mission dogs in Aklavik. The mission boat called the Immaculata used to pick the brothers up from this camp and take them back to Aklavik.


Old Aklavik

This was the original site of Aklavik. In 1912, Kenneth Stewart, an employee of the Hudson’s Bay Company, was responsible for organizing the fur trade in the Aklavik area and built a Hudson’s Bay Company trading post at the mouth of the Pokiak Channel, the location of an Inuvialuit campsite. Consequently, he is considered by many to be the founder of Aklavik. By 1918, the growth of the fur trade led to an expansion of the settlement across the river to its present location.


Ok Choo

Aklavik elders Mary Kendi, Annie Benoit, Dolly McLeod, and Catherine Semple, have described this place as an important fishing area. Many different types of fish can be found here and runs of Dolly Varden Charr occur in fall. It is believed to be an old time camping spot as there are many old camp signs in the area. John Carmichael’s parents used to stay in the area, and he has a camp here now. An old time hunting trail leads into the mountains from here. Mary Kendi described this trail as being the shortest overland route from Husky Channel to the mountains.


Vadzaih Daagaii Zheh

Reindeer Station was established by the Canadian Government in the early 1930's to manage the reindeer which had survived a five-year trek from Alaska to the east bank of the Mackenzie River Delta. The reindeer were kept in a 6,600 sq. mile grazing reserve east of the Delta. There used to be a Hudson's Bay Company trading post at Reindeer Station, and the Pelican Rapids, a HBC freighter, used to stop here.


Dineedidraii Khyidh

This name refers to an area at the northern end of the Caribou Hills. The hills in this area look like they have been scratched from top to bottom by giant fingers. Gwichya Gwich'in hunted caribou here in the summer because the hair was short in length and would not shed. It was much valued for winter clothing because the hair could be left on the skin and worn with the hair on the outside. Caribou skin tents on the other hand were made with the hair on the inside.



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