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Idaa Trail

Written by Wendy Stephenson

Illustrated by Autumn Downey

  • 64 Pages
  • 9781554987887
  • 9.500" x 7.000"
  • Reading age from 7 to 10
  • JUVENILE FICTION / Family / Multigenerational
  • JUVENILE FICTION / People & Places / Canada / Native Canadian


Publication Date June 01, 2005

Etseh, Etsi and their three grandchildren have just embarked on a month long canoe trip in the Northwest Territories -- from the town of Rae to Hottah Lake. They are following the Idaa trail, a trade route that the Dogrib people have traveled for hundreds of years.

Etseh and Etsi traveled the Idaa trail when they were children and as they paddle north with their grandchildren they pass along their knowledge of special sites along the way and explain how their people survived in the old days -- building birch bark canoes, fishing with willow lines and muskrat-tooth hooks, and ambushing herds of caribou.

This remarkable work, based on ten years of archaeological research, documents the past and present of one of the most intact tribal cultures of North America.

Runner-up for the IODE Violet Downey Book Award 2005


Wendy Stephenson
Wendy Stephenson is Curator of Education at the Prince of Wales Northern Heritage Centre in Yellowknife, Northwest Territories. The archeological research on the Idaa Trail inspired her to write this book, and she has canoed many parts of the trail described in the story.

Autumn Downey
Autumn Downey's illustrations appear in Shield Country by Jamie Bastedo (The Arctic Institute of North America) and the Arctic Ecozone Poster series. She lives in Yellowknife, Northwest Territories.


"Written with simplicity and reverence, this 64-page chapter book is a valuable instructional tool which introduces young readers to the DENE Nation and to the Dogrib way of life." CM Magazine