Cree First Nation Canadian Wilderness Experience


This includes transfer from the airport, accommodation, food and all activities. It DOES NOT include International flights.

Dates: 7th Feb – 17th Feb 2018

Join us for an expedition to Canada where we will spend ten days in the heart of winter, immersed in the wilderness with our Cree First Nation hosts.

We will strap on our snow shoes and head out to live in the boreal forest where we will be shown how their ancestors have lived and hunted for generations, and where our Cree hosts Anna and David still hunt today.

The Cree are unique in that, as one of the last generations of native subsistence hunters in Canada, there has never been a gap in their history of hunting for survival. This knowledge means that they will show us how to look for the tracks of the different wildlife; the beaver, fox, moose, deer and wolf that we may encounter in the area. They will also show us the skills and craft that has been passed down from their ancestors to allow the them to live and thrive in the wilderness environment.

Like our ancestors, we hunt animals for our food. We do not think of hunting as a victory over nature. Rather, we tend to think of it as part of the larger gift of life. If you join us at one of our bush camps, you will be able to see this for yourself. There, you can join us for “country foods” such as moose, beaver, goose, ptarmigan, caribou, arctic hare and local freshwater fish. You will also learn about the time-honoured ways in which we prepare these foods. And you`ll see that, as conservators, we do not waste any part of the animal”*

– David Bosum, Cree

This is a great experience for anyone who has the call of the North and wants to experience really living with the land from experts whose ancestors have lived and hunted with the land for thousands of years.

*Please note that vegetarians are also catered for, and as a vegetarian myself, it won’t be just be potatoes, potatoes and more potatoes.

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The itinerary of this experience is governed very much by the changing environment which you will be fully immersed in; the landscape, the elements and the wildlife.

Day 1

Arrive at  Chibougamau, Quebec and free airport transfer to the Cree community at Ouje-Bougoumou, which means “the Place where People Gather” – a community which in 1995 won a U.N. award for excellence.  (Please see ‘more information’ for more information on the community of Ouje-Bougoumou).

Day 2-8

The next day we will be heading out with our snow shoes to the wilderness on the edge of Lake Opemiska staying in our Cree hosts, David and Anna, winter canvas accommodation, with its homely log burner and thick spruce bough floor.

There is no set itinerary as we will adapt to the environment. This could mean that you will find yourself learning how to catch fish through thick ice, before preparing them to cook over an open fire, or working on a moose hide which can then be turned into the soft leather used for making traditional mukluks and warm footwear. You might be learning to carve or explore traditional craft.

Each day we will see the tracks of the wildlife and David and Anna will show us how to interpret and identify the tracks. They will hunt and if they are successful, you may wish to partake and help to then process the animal so that no part of it is wasted and learn how to utilise every bone, sinew, flesh and hide.

If you wish you can be shielded from any actual hunt itself, as make no mistake, it is real and to the Cree it is their means of survival.

Day 9

Return to Ouje-Bougoumou community. Shower and share your stories with the community.

Day 10

Transfer to Chibougamau and depart for home




The accommodation during this expedition is in shared gender canvas tents with thick spruce bough flooring and log burners to keep us toasty warm.

There are no shower facilities during the wilderness immersion section of the expedition, although hot water and privacy will be provided for a strip wash. Toilets are the great outdoors….just choose your spot. Toilet paper is provided.

You will have an opportunity for a hot shower at Ouje-Bougoumou when you arrive and before you leave the community.

This is an alcohol free expedition.

Other information

Please be aware that this trip gives you a very real experience of how the Cree live today. They will not all be sleeping in tepees. They will not be wearing feathers in their hair, or war paint on their faces. They are, however, a proud people who have worked hard to maintain their heritage and connection with the earth.

Your visit will start with a tour of Oujé-Bougoumou, which means “the Place where People Gather” – a community which in 1995 won a U.N. award for excellence. You will see a unique heating plant which reflects their tradition of conservation; fed by waste sawdust, it sends out heat via underground pipes to every building in the village. You will see buildings that combine a traditional astchiiugamikw (tepee) style with a modern style and the reconstructed “cultural village” where you`ll learn how they make handicrafts such as tufting, moccasins, or snowshoes. Take time to sit with elders and hear their stories about the old days, their faces gently illuminated by the flicker of bear grease lamps.




Physical Requirements

This trip is available to those aged 15+ years. If you are a family or looking to bring a youth group, then please get in touch as we can arrange a bespoke trip for you.

A good level of fitness would make this trip more enjoyable to you and you must be capable of walking in snow shoes (we will teach you the technique) through deep undulating snow.

This trip is currently not available to those with physical disabilities but if it appeals to you, then please get in touch and help us to accommodate you in the future.

Getting Ready for your Trip

Once we have received your booking we will send you further information for example on; visas, vaccinations and suggested kit list.

In the mean time, to get you excited and ready for your adventure, you may be interested in;

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