Saoyú-Ɂehdacho National Historic Site of Canada

A young girl documenting her Elders
A young girl documents her Elders preparing moose meat
© Parks Canada
Saoyú and Ɂehdacho are two large peninsulas reaching into Great Bear Lake (“Sahtú” in the North Slavey language) just south of the Arctic Circle in the Northwest Territories. Designated a National Historic Site in 1997 and set aside as a protected area in 2008, Saoyú and Ɂehdacho are teaching, healing and spiritual places, essential to the cultural well-being of the Sahtúgot’įnę -- “the people of Sahtú.” Most Sahtúgot’įnę now live in Délįnę, the only community on Great Bear Lake.

The elders of Délįnę say that the protection of Saoyú and Ɂehdacho is a responsibility given to the Sahtúgot’įnę by their ancestors. It is through these places and the stories associated with them that the Elders pass on their knowledge: their history, values, laws, land use skills, land management practices and life-styles. The 5,565 km2 site is cooperatively managed by the Délįnę Land Corporation and the Délįnę Renewable Resources Council, together with the Parks Canada Agency.

Saoyú Hǝ́ Ɂehdacho, Nakecho Gonę́nę́ Hek’éodí

Saoyú hǝ́ Ɂehdacho nįɂa sį́į sahtú k’ǝ ełets’ę́ kérį́ɂá. (Great Bear Lake sį́į dene kedǝ́ k’ę́ ‘’Sahtú’’ góredi) sį́į dúhdá Northwest Territories gok’ǝ́yíi Arctic Circle gots’ę hįkwǝ́ǝ ts’ę́ Sahtú góɂǫ. Sahtúgot’įnę náowere nezǫ́ hedegutǫ́ t’á nágutse gogha edire 2008 ekúu Nakecho Nę́nę́ Hek’éodí gha káaya sį́į gosánédarę́t’ǫ. Saoyú hǝ́ Ɂehdacho dahxáré dene gháonetę hǝ́ dene najú hǝ́ edire newehtsįnę náoweré ts’ę́ káadets’enęɂá sį́į goghǫ agǫ́ht’e. Sahtúgot’įnę gįlį sį́į k’áhjįnę areyǫnę́ Délįnę nádǝ́ hǝ́ Sahtúbáe gogha gots’ę, eyi zǫ kǫ́tah hólį.

Sahtúgot’įnę gots’ę denecho eyiá Saoyú hǝ́ Ɂehdacho hǝ́ gok’ǝ́ts’udí gha ǫt’é t’á są́, Délįnę gots’ę dene ɂǫhdá kǝ suré nádaogéhwhe. Nę hǝ́ begodí dahxáré t’á są́ dene ɂǫhdá kǝ eyi benáoweré yáhįlį sį́į dene ghágenįla: yahnį́į gots’ę genįdǝ gogodí, dene ts’įlį benáoweré, dene ɂeɂá, nę k’ǝ edeghálats’ereda, nę hek’éts’edí hǝ́ dánį́ bek’ǝ edegots’edí goghǫ ǫt’e.

Délįnę Land Corporation hǝ́ Délįnę Renewable Resources Council kǝ́ sį́į Parks Canada Agency gohǝ́ edire 5,565 km2nę hek’éodí hįlį gha sį́į ededįnę godahxáré gohǝ́ k’egogeɂa.