Thursday, May 27, 2010

Live the legend that is Great Slave Lake - Northwest Territories

Great Slave Lake stretches to the northern horizon like a vast inland sea. It’s one of the biggest, deepest freshwater lakes on the planet, and the second largest lake within Canada. Great Slave stretches 456 kilometres from east to west, and feeds the 1800 km long Mackenzie River, which flows north to the arctic coast. With typical northern understatement, we call Great Slave “the Big Lake”.

Hay River is the largest community, a town, shipping port and home of the Great Slave fishing fleet. Take a local boat tour, or seek out the headwaters of the Mackenzie River in a sea kayak. Go camping or fishing with our experienced outfitters. With a population of 3253, the North's largest shipping hub has accommodations, restaurants, a seaport atmosphere and Great Slave Lake. Visit Katl'odeeche Reserve, home to the Dene Cultural Institute and Hay River Mission National Historic Site. Sports events and fishing derbies are yearly highlights, and don't miss the fiddling and jigging contest at the Metis Friendship Centre. Hay River is accessible via Highway 2; regular air service is available to and from Yellowknife. Then, drive east to the wildlife-rich Slave River Delta and Fort Resolution, once a fur trading outpost. Explore the story of the wood bison at a local ranch, or tour the Delta with an aboriginal guide. At Lutsel’ ke, accessible by air (from Yellowknife), the fishing really heats up. Here in the East Arm of Great Slave Lake you’ll find world class lake trout fishing, and the site of a future National Park.

A quiet stronghold of Chipewyan and Métis culture, Fort Resolution was established in 1786 as a fur-trade centre on the Slave River Delta. today it's a base for sport fishing adventures and explorations of Great Slave Lake. Drive here via Highway 6, or fly from Yellowknife. Accommodations include B&Bs and wilderness cabins at Little Buffalo River.

Lutsel K'e ("Place of small fish"), a Chipewyan settlement, is the only community on Great Slave Lake's legendary East Arm. You can engage an outfitter for memorable large trout fishing on the Big Lake, or to take you on a boat tour. There's a summer fishing lodge, and Lutsel K'e receives regular air service from Yellowknife.

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