Minaki, Ontario Canada

Minaki is a small unincorporated community in Northern Ontario, Canada. It is located at the point where the Canadian National Railways mainline crosses the Winnipeg River, and was accessible only by rail until about 1960. It was a fuelling and watering point in the days of steam locomotives; now few trains stop in Minaki, though the thrice-weekly Via Rail transcontinental passenger train will stop on request.

Tourism is the economic mainstay of Minaki, with camps, lodges and marinas catering to anglers and hunters. It is the embarkation point for more than 100 water-access cottages on surrounding lakes. The largest group of cottagers are from Winnipeg, about 3 1/2 hours drive away, and from nearby U.S. states.

First nations people have apparently lived on the Winnipeg River in the Minaki area for a millennium or more, judging by the potshards and arrow points that turn up along the shores. The river was a major canoe route for the explorers and fur traders in the early days of white settlement. In the nineteenth century the Hudson's Bay Company had a trading post a couple of kilometres north of the present community.

The modern community of Minaki got its start about 1910 when the National Transcontinental Railway built a bridge across the river near where Skipper Holst had built a hotel a few years earlier and called the place Winnipeg River Crossing. The booming city of Winnipeg was about three hours travel to the west on the railway, and in no time there was a land boom in vacation properties on the small lakes along the railway.

Source: Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia