"The Quatre Fourches - - 'The Four Forks' - gets its name from the
junction of a channel which connects a small lake called the Mamawee with
the south-west angle of Lake Athabasca, Fort Chipewyan being situated on
an opposite shore upon an arm of the lake, here about six miles wide. The
stream is sluggish, and is thickly wooded to the water's edge, with here
and there an exposure of red granite. It is a very beautiful stream, and
it was a pleasure to get out of the great river and its oppressive
vastness into the familiar looking, homely water, its eastern rocks and
exquisite curves and bends. Rounding a point, we came upon a camp of
Chipewyans drying fish and making birch-bark canoes, all of them fat,
dirty, like ourselves, and happy; and, passing on, at dusk we reached the
outlet and the lake.
It was blowing hard, but we decided to cross to the fort, where a light
had been run up for our guidance, and which, by vigorous rowing, we
reached by midnight. Here Mr. Laird was waiting to receive us, the other
Commissioners having departed for Fort McMurray and Wahpooskow."
Reprinted from Through the Mackenzie Basin: An Account of
the Signing of Treaty No. 8 and the Scrip Commission, 1899 by Charles Mair.