Boating in Canada Archive

Great Slave Lake Marine radio

Full Marine radio coverage coming to Great Slave Lake

Bernie Van Tighem
Communications Master, Yellowknife Coast Guard Auxiliary

*** Information ****

The Government of The Northwest Territories (GNWT) Emergency Services Division in concert with The Coast Guard Auxiliary (CGA) in Yellowknife and Hay River applied for a New Initiatives Funding (NIF) grant to provide greater Marine VHF coverage on the Great Slave Lake. This began as a push from the Fishing Industry and a respected local Marina Owner and has been allocated this year.

The initiative will provide several marine repeaters on the Great Slave lake. An additional tie to the Inuvik MCTS from Yellowknife Bay is also expected to occur coincidental to this initiative. The repeaters are tentatively planned to be operating on Marine VHF channels 24, 25, 26 and 78. This will provide wide area coverage for most of the traveled portions of the lake. The areas around Yellowknife Bay and Hay River will have direct access via Simplex Channel 16 to a Coast Guard radio operator in Inuvik as does the entire Mackenzie River route.

Although the repeaters do not currently connect to the Coast Guard MCTS, the possibility of linking them exists in future years. When they are operating they will however provide extended communications for boaters on the lake in what is a very isolated area. This should greatly enhance ones ability to summon help should the need ever arise.

The repeaters are planned to be located as follows:

Chan 24 McKinley Point

Chan 25 Lutsel K'e & Utsingi Point

Chan 26 Old Fort Island & Inner Whalebacks

Chan 78 Hardisty Island & Egg Island

The official launch will be immediately after we have verified that the repeaters are installed and functioning correctly. The Coast Guard, with the support of the Yellowknife and Hay River Coast Guard Auxiliaries, will be doing the installs early in the boating season. This should be completed in the 2000 boating season.

Bernie Van Tighem (
Communications Master with the Yellowknife Coast Guard Auxiliary