Pakua Shipi

What to KNOW

Pakua Shipi is an Innu community located across from the village of St. Augustine on the west bank of the St. Augustine River. The name Pakua Shipi derives from an Innu term meaning river of sand, an appropriate description of the striking sand banks that appear at low tide at the mouth of the river. Until recently, traditionally nomadic Innu travelled along the St. Augustine River to the interior to fish, hunt and trap the renowned salmon, trout and fur-bearing animals along the river.

In the 1860s, a Hudson’s Bay Company trading post was established near the mouth of the river to serve local settlers and Aboriginal traders. The post was abandoned and then reopened in the early 1900s. A community at Pakua Shipi has existed in some form or another for centuries. It became an official village in the 1970s with the start of a government housing project. Residents of Pakua Shipi continue to practice traditional Innu activities, including fishing, hunting, trapping, and making handcrafted goods. People speak the Innu language among themselves. Most also speak French, and a few of the older residents speak English.

What to SEE

Outer Islands and traditional camping grounds

A boat owner in Pakua Shipi or neighbouring St. Augustine can be hired to take you to outer islands around St. Augustine Bay. Check at the hotel for more information. These islands were traditional camping grounds for Aboriginal Peoples, and settlers once built their houses here.

St. Augustine River

You can travel by boat through an endless maze of rigolets – small fjord-like sheltered arms of the sea – giving you a close-up view of whales, seals, seabirds and shore. In high tide, it is possible to navigate up the St. Augustine River.

St. Augustine Migratory Bird Sanctuary

Located just southeast of St. Augustine, this federal seabird sanctuary is comprised of several small islands. The sanctuary protects important breeding grounds for seven bird species: Terns, Razorbills, Black Guillemots, Common Eider Ring-billed Gull, Herring Gull, and Great Black-backed Gulls.

WHAT TO DO

IN SUMMER

Hiking and walking, bird and whale watching, iceberg viewing, boat tours, sea kayaking, berry-picking, salmon fishing, wilderness camping, ATV

  • Trout Point Trail: This short walking trail marked by cairns is located at the federal wharf where fishing boats and cargo ships unload. It is several kilometres from Pakua Shipi and St. Augustine, and is best accessed by visitors stopping in on the Bella Desgagés. The trail provides a view of St. Augustine across the river. Local artisans sometimes set up a craft tent selling authentic Innu handicrafts at Trout Point.
  • Boat tours: A local boat tour operator can take you up the St. Augustine River, and in and out of the endless rigolets. On the way, you can go fishing and learn about the traditional Innu way of life.

IN WINTER

Snowmobiling, ice fishing, snowshoeing, cross-country skiing, winter carnival, hockey tournaments

Services

L`ARTISANAT

Pakua Shipi (QC), G0G 2R0