ITI and Industry Partners Beef-Up Beloved Yellowknife Trail

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April 17, 2019

The popular Ranney Hill Trail, beloved by day-hikers and dogs alike, is getting an upgrade. ITI is working alongside 10 private sector and not-for-profit organizations to create the Ranney Hill Geological Interpretive Trail.

History of the Trail

In the 1930s, prospectors came north seeking gold. One of them was Winslow Ranney. In his search, he opened what became known as the Ranney Hill Trail near Vee Lake. Years later, as gold mines closed, the trail was adapted for recreation. The Ranney Hill Trail is now known as a great afternoon hike with amazing 360 degree views upon its unique outcrop.

In 2013, TerraX Minerals acquired the area as part of its ongoing Yellowknife City Gold Project.

TerraX has partnered with ITI, the NWT Geological Survey and Mine Training Society, to offer prospecting course along the Ranney Hill Geological Interpretive Trail. The course, which offers individuals from around the territory their prospecting licence, sells out every year.

RELATED STORY: Mining Matters Returns to the North Slave

In 2017, a working group was established to consider ways different groups could use the trail. It was led by the NWT Parks and Recreation Association and included TerraX and ITI's Tourism and Parks and Mineral Resources Divisions; as well as the NWT Geological Survey. Together, they funded independent consultations and studies aimed at potential uses for the trail.

A Collaborative Project

A major objective of the Working Group is to demonstrate that a trail can serve multiple uses in the community. In this case: an outdoor classroom, a tourism attraction and a recreational facility – all while still an active prospecting claim. Planned upgrades will include route markers interpretive signs and commemorative stories on benches.

Through the NWT Geological Survey and its Mineral Resources Division, ITI is currently developing the geological content, historical context and a prospector’s interpretation of the Ranney Hill Trail for delivery in a downloadable interpretive App. 

The evolution of this project is a testament to collaboration. Each member organization is contributing something. In the end, many different community groups will have a facility that serves their specific needs.

Working Group Members


Mine Training Society NWT
NWT Recreation and Parks Association
Ecole St. Pat’s Kimberlite Careers and Technology Center

Private Sector

Acasta Heliflight Inc.
Northwest Builders Inc.
TerraX Minerals Inc.
Wood Engineering


Tourism and Parks ITI GNWT
Mineral and Petroleum Resources ITI GNWT
NWT Geological Survey


Scouts Canada
Yellowknife Ski Club

The Department of Industry, Tourism and Investment is proud to be a part of this initiative and look-up to the other working group members as they strive to drive this project home.