Sunday, July 02, 2006


"Pinesewapikung Saagaigan" Healing Camp!

"Pinesewapikung Saagaigan" Healing Camp is on the Poplar River system at Weaver Lake. The camp is administrated by the Poplar River Band. The Head Co-ordinator is Ray Rabliauskas, a good man I have known for about a dozen years. It is a beautiful spot, on a flat terrace overlooking the water.

To the west of the Camp, a large hill juts from the surface of the earth, towering 200 feet above the surrounding land. It is called "Thunder Mountain", or "Pinesewapikung" in the "Saulteaux" language, the local Ojibway dialect. "Saagaigan" means "lake" in Saulteaux, therefore "Pinesewapikung Saagaigan" means Thunder Mountain Lake. The Elders state Thunder Mountain is the home of the "Thunderbird", the Guardian who watches over all.

The Poplar River Band uses "Pinesewapikung Saagaigan" Healing Camp as a "healing" and "meeting" place. It is a traditional place, with no running water or electricity. People live and interact like they did years ago at a purer time in history when the land sustained the people, and was respected in return. The Poplar Band is rejecting any development or road-building on their traditional hunting and trapping lands, after seeing how the Cree of Northern Manitoba were lied to and violated by the Manitoba Hydro hydroelectric projects. Anyways, "Pinesewapikung Saagaigan" Healing Camp is a "natural jewel", let's have a look around, as I was at the Camp on Friday.

UKN at "Pinesewapikung Saagaigan" Healing Camp! Posted by Picasa

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View from the float! Posted by Picasa

I love the "stools"! Posted by Picasa

Kitchen! Posted by Picasa

Tent frame and wooden floor. Posted by Picasa

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Solomon Pascal from Pauingassi relaxes. I flew Solomon to the trapline 20 years ago. Posted by Picasa

Central to the Healing Camp is, of course, the "Teepee", and do they ever have a fantastic one here! Posted by Picasa

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Wooden needles keep the Teepee closed. Posted by Picasa

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I asked for, and was given permission to enter the Teepee. The central fire pit was there. Posted by Picasa

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View upward from inside. Posted by Picasa

Later when I left, I flew over the camp. You can see how the Teepee is central. What a great spot! Posted by Picasa

Yes, a great spot, and it is great the people of Poplar are embracing the wilderness and trying to protect it from being spoiled. It is said the Brazilian Rainforest and the Northern Boreal Forest are the "lungs of the earth". The Brazilian Rainforest is now scarred by roads, ranches, farms, and dams, and it's very existence is threatened. Congratulations to the people of Poplar River for their determination to keep their "priceless and irreplaceable piece of wilderness" in a natural, pristine state.

Read a Washington Post article about Poplar River and the Boreal Forest.

ARTICLE - In the Boreal Forest, A Developing Storm

For more information on "Pinesewapikung Saagaigan" Healing Camp, contact Ray Rabliauskas, Lands Management Coordinator
Poplar River, Manitoba, Canada R0B 0Z0 Ph: 204-244-2267 Fax: 204-244-2690


WEBSITE - Poplar River First Nation - "Asatiwisipe Aki"

I been there this summer (August 2008) great place!
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