Ingraham Trial Realignment Project

Kimberly Jankuta (NWT Archaeologist’s Permit 2012-013)

In July of 2012 Altamira Consulting Ltd conducted an archaeological field survey of the Ingraham Trail located near Yellowknife, NWT. The survey is part of an Archaeological Impact Assessment for the Ingraham Trial Realignment Project. The project personnel included Kimberly Jankuta and Jode MacKay.

Originally constructed in the mid-1960s the Ingraham Road is part of Highway 4 that extends from Yellowknife approximately 70 km east to Tibbit Lake. The proposed realignment moves the southernmost leg of the road to the west to detour around the Giant Mine area. The proposed realignment will move the southern access point to the west from 48th street onto Highway 3. The realignment will connect with the existing road several kilometers to the north, near the turn off towards Vee Lake. The realignment will detour traffic around the Giant Mine area in anticipation of the remediation of the abandoned gold mine.

The archaeological survey, which consisted of pedestrian reconnaissance and sub-surface shovel tests, was directed at assessing archaeological potential within the proposed Ingraham Trail Realignment right-of-way (r-o-w). This included shovel testing in areas thought to have potential and identifying areas of disturbance, both modern and historic.

No archaeological sites were found during the survey. Two rectangular shaped rock features were noted, which may represent the use of rocks to hold down a tent on the rocky landscape. However, no hearths or cultural materials were found in association. A known historic site was revisited during the survey; the historic site is located adjacent to the project area. It represents the location of a 1935 Geological Survey of Canada field crew’s discovery of gold. The team led by Norman Jennejohn discovered a quartz vein with visible gold. The site itself consists of a large trench cut through the bedrock.

(Edited by Shelley Crouch, Prince of Wales Northern Heritage Centre)