Tr'ondëk Hwëch'in Heritage Sites

Welcome to Tr'ondëk Hwëch'in Heritage Sites, an online resource dedicated to exploring our history and culture.

Black City: First Hunt

First Hunt camp, 2003.

First Hunt camp, 2003.

Tr’ondëk Hwëch’in Archives, David Neufeld Coll.
Learning gun safety and marksmanship, 2003.

Learning gun safety and marksmanship, 2003.

Tr’ondëk Hwëch’in Archives, David Neufeld Coll.
A successful hunt – field dressed quarters of caribou.

A successful hunt – field dressed quarters of caribou.

Tr’ondëk Hwëch’in Archives, David Neufeld Coll.
The successful hunt is celebrated at a community feast.

The successful hunt is celebrated at a community feast.

Since the early 1990s, the Tr’ondëk Hwëch’in have introduced community youth to their first hunt under the guidance of experienced hunters and Elders. Every fall, First Nations youth travel up the Dempster Highway to spend time in the country that has always been an important source of food for their ancestors.

Here they camp and learn about the land and the ways of its animal inhabitants, First Nations culture and hunting. Volunteers from the Canadian Rangers teach the youth skills such as map-reading, firearms safety and winter survival. There is also time for fun, with evening games and stories.

Back in Dawson, the youth share the meat with their community at a feast to celebrate the young hunters and the successful hunt. In accordance with custom, Elders receive the remaining meat.