Pinehouse Lake, once known as "Snake Lake," is a primarily Métis community in northern Saskatchewan, located on the western shore of Pinehouse Lake in the boreal forest. Pinehouse, which is around 170 kilometers from the nearest town, is connected to nearby villages via an all-weather gravel road and a local airfield.
Cree and michif is the mother tongue for most of the residents in this community or village of about 1,500 people. Like many other northern communities, Pinehouse has a very young population, with about 55% under the age of 20.
The area has long been a center of trade, the northern part of the lake home to Hudson Bay’s Souris River trading post from 1875-1939. Around the turn of the century, a small group of Aboriginal families from along the Churchill River came together at the settlement where the growing community of Pinehouse now stands.
Today, great efforts are being taken to increase successful graduation rates of the young population. An infant daycare also exists in the high school to assist parenting students. There is also a large emphasis on bringing training programs into the community. This has included training and apprentice programs in carpentry, heavy duty mechanics, tourism and hospitality and camp services. Aboriginal medicine wheel and circle of courage healing methodology are included in this programming and high risk students are targeted.
Traditional and cultural activities like as hunting, fishing, trapping, and gathering are still practiced by Pinehouse locals. Annual cultural camps for youth and the annual Elders Gathering help to educate individuals and preserve the Pinehouse Métis community's traditional customs.