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Chapter 10: First Nations Settlements

10.1: The Location of St. Theresa Point


The St. Theresa Point First Nation is one of three—St. Theresa Point, Wasagamack, and Garden Hill—located at the west end of Island Lake in northeastern Manitoba, about 470 air kilometers northeast of Winnipeg. The landform, St. Theresa Point, is a north/south trending peninsula jutting north into Island Lake.

This medium-scale photo shows the St. Theresa Point First Nation. Which “is not on the Manitoba highway system, and is thus regularly accessible only by air. For this purpose there is a 3,500 foot (1067 m) gravel strip serviced by scheduled flights.”[i] The airstrip 1 is located on St. Mary Island 2, a location which poses problems: “during freeze up and spring thaw, when the ice is thin or breaking up, helicopters are the only way to get from the reserve community where everyone lives to the island…where the Northern Store [formerly the Hudson’s Bay Company store] 3 is located, with its supplies of fresh food and gas, the mail depot, and banking services.”[ii]

There are also dock facilities for floatplanes and “in mid-winter months the reserve is also accessible by winter roads constructed across the lake from Garden Hill and then south along the eastern shore of Lake Winnipeg.”[iii]

In 2006 the population was 2,632. The photo shows clearly the absence of any road pattern. One roughly north/south road 4 runs along the peninsula with side roads 5 off to the coast where jetties are located 6. Those in the north 7 serve boats traveling across the strip of water separating St. Theresa Point from St. Mary Island on the south side of which are several jetties 8. A group of large buildings in the north 9 probably includes the band office and the school. Other rectangular buildings on cleared land just off the roads 10 are individual dwellings.

This area is located in the Northern Coniferous Forest vegetation zone.[iv] Coniferous trees—medium dark tone—11 cover most of the uncleared land. Note the specular reflection from the water surface east of the peninsula 12.

Figure 10.1: The Location of St. Theresa Point

Figure 10.1: The Location of St. Theresa Point

Figure 10.1

Vertical air photograph: A26696-37

Flight height: 10,800 feet a.s.l.; lens focal length: 152.031 mm

Scale: 1:20,000 (approx.)

Date: June 5, 1985

Location: Location of the north end of St. Theresa Point: Latitude 53º 50' N; Longitude 94º 51' W

Map sheets: 1:250,000 53E Island Lake

                    1:50,000 53E/15 Island Lake


[i] Mason, R. and Annis, R. C. “St. Theresa Point: Band No. 298” in The Geography of Manitoba: Its Land and Its People. eds. J. Welsted, J. Everitt, and C. Stadel. Winnipeg: The University of Manitoba Press, 1996, 134.

[ii] Mason, R. and Annis, R. C. op. cit., 1996, 134.

[iii] Mason, R. and Annis, R. C. op. cit., 1996, 134. A map of Manitoba’s winter roads can be found in Foster, R. H. “Winter Roads” in Welsted, Everitt, and Stadel op. cit., 1996, Figure 12.2.1., 175.

[iv] Scott, G. A. J. “Manitoba’s Ecoclimatic Regions” in Welsted, Everitt and Stadel op. cit., 1996, figure 4.2, 45.