It started with a couple of huskies, an idea in 2015. By 2019, Richard McIntosh and Christine Wenman had started Sundog Adventures, providing kicksled tours around Yellowknife’s Back Bay.
But when opportunity comes knocking, a true entrepreneur answers the door. They acquired The Trading Post, a log building in the heart of Old Town when it came up for sale. But that meant Richard and Christine had to grow the business to pay for it. The Trading Post with direct access to Great Slave Lake is perfect for houseboat and heritage tours by boat for visitors, and a much-needed boat taxi service for local house boaters.
I hopped aboard one of these tours on a sunny summer afternoon. Long-time Yellowknifer and reputed “dog whisperer” Cheyenna was my guide. Cheyenna skillfully, if somewhat tentatively, maneuvered us through the ever-so narrow and perilously shallow channel under the causeway connecting Yellowknife’s old town from Latham Island. From there we meandered through the colourful houseboats that hug the shorelines around Jolliffe Island and Dog Island — so named because house boaters used to drop their dogs there to run and play while the residents toddled off to work. We passed Ndilo, a Dene First Nations community before stopping at Yellowknife’s now infamous Giant gold mine for a light picnic lunch and to learn about the early mining days in the North.
Sundog’s tour provided an important, if somewhat sobering lesson in Yellowknife’s history. We meandered back to Sundog Trading Post, past Old Town Cemetery, and the home of local and reality TV legend, Buffalo Joe McBryan.Sundog provides a well informed peek into the history of Old Town Yellowknife. And what could be better than being out on the lake on a sunny summer afternoon?