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PH: 250-842-0216
FAX: 250-842-2219

P.O. Box 418
Hazelton, BC
V0J 1Y0

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Mini Gallery

Angie is rigged up and ready to go get maple!

Travis is helping to haul out our first batch of maple!

Our first truckload of maple!

The crew is scraping rawhide!

We had to collect more wood to build our steam-bend units!

Thank you, please visit us again!

The Canada Council for the Arts

Snowshoe Workshop

Elder Instructor Bill GreenIn January 2011, the YHY crew hosted a snowshoe making course that was taught by elder instructor Bill Green.

This workshop took six weeks to complete and we learned to build snowshoes the traditional way. In addition, we experienced an immersive environment that gave us a glimpse into the lives of our elders and ancestors. We also learned the level of perfection and commitment our elders and ancestors demonstrated when building snowshoes such as:

Another benefit of learning this art practice was seeing how our elders problem solved and created ingenious tools to assist them in creation processes. We also noted the difference between ourselves and our elder instructor. Many of us joked, but we were outclassed in terms of fitness and definition of hard work.

Read more about the Snowshoe Making Workshop:

Recognizing & Harvesting Maple

Photos of our Maple harvest trip

At the beginning of this workshop, we took field trips out to the territory to gather Maple. This seems a straight forward process but is it not that simple to find maple as all the trees look the same!

The Snowshoe Making Crew are harvesting maple with Elder Instructor Bill GreenOn our first trip we assumed that we would head out, cut trees and be done in no time. Instead, we searched for 1/2 a day before finding a clump of maple; and Bill deemed it too difficult to attain as the maple was in a steep incline - SADNESS.

Our crew secretly began to question if we would ever find maple, then Bill brought us to his personal hot spot, SUCCESS AT LAST!

Everyone had a good rest that night...

A photo of Dave hauling maple out of the woodsOn another trip Bill took us to an access road that used to be a trail he and his family walked when he was a child. This road was a new experience as we were on the side of a mountain - with extremely curvy roads. We found much maple on this trip but were challenged at the constant walking up and down the side of a mountain. Again, we slept great that night!

During our treks we were trying not to breath too harshly, stumble too much, or fall behind. Everyone of us looked at Bill with new eyes and much respect as our instructor was natural and tireless in the forests. With amused chuckles, the Snowshoe crew tried hard to keep up to Bill; and only a couple of us were hanging on to trees to keep us upright.

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Making Cool Tools

The Snowshoe Crew made these tools and equipment

One of the requirements of the 'Snowshoe Making' workshop was to learn how to set up our own steam-bending environment. We wanted our snowshoe crew to continue making snowshoes - so they had to learn to make the tools and steam-bending forms.

Our crew is making snow-shoe form framesOur elder instructor Bill Green showed us how to make:

We also learned how to build an:Our Snowshoe crew making a steam-shelter

In conclusion, by making our own tools, we learned that we do not need to rely on store bought tools or materials to begin creating; instead, we used natural resources and materials already available. Moreover, Bill shared with us our ancestral tool-making methods; providing us with insight and awe of how our culture created ingenious tools for specific tasks.

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