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Heather Ramsay

Heather Ramsay is a freelance writer now based in the Fraser Valley. Her work has appeared in The Tyee, Maisonneuve, Canadian Geographic, Vancouver Review, Canada’s History Magazine, the Vancouver Sun, BC Bookworld, Galleries West, The Globe and Mail, Northword Magazine and more. She spent 10 years on Haida Gwaii and has written two books, both published by the Haida Gwaii Museum: Gina 'Waadluxan Tluu: The Everything Canoe (2010) and Gyaagang.ngaay: The Monumental Poles of Skidegate (2012).

Reporting beat: Haida Gwaii

Stories by Heather Ramsay


Art and Decolonization: ‘This Is My Activism’

Four bold exhibitions create a new narrative around Indigenous experiences.

By Heather Ramsay, 30 Jan 2017


‘Now that You Know, You Can’t Turn a Blind Eye’

Author, activist Bev Sellars on her book ‘Price Paid: The Fight for First Nations Survival.’

By Heather Ramsay, 19 Dec 2016


Hours Left to Tell Liberals to Reverse Harper Attack on Fish Habitat Protection

Consultation offers chance to push for enforcement officers, put teeth back in Fisheries Act.

By Heather Ramsay, 24 Nov 2016


A Tyee Series

A Hog of One's Own

Remembering the dismembering. And then the feast. Second of two.

By Heather Ramsay, 27 Dec 2011


A Tyee Series

Bless Our Little Pigdom

In which four couples buy six piglets, visions of barbeque dancing in our heads. Part one of two.

By Heather Ramsay, 26 Dec 2011


'That Which Makes Us Haida'

Less than 40 fluent speakers of the Haida language remain, but they won't let it go without a fight.

By Heather Ramsay, 3 Nov 2011


Why Shave Your Nether Regions?

Here in northern BC, I thought pubic hair removal was a fussy fad for city types. Then I started asking around.

By Heather Ramsay, 17 Aug 2011


'The Everything Canoe'

Meet the fallers, carvers and historians of the Haida canoe, icon of a 10,000 year-old culture.

By Heather Ramsay, 4 Jul 2011


Getting Kids out on the Land

Pulling them off the couch means a day's adventure in Gwaii Haanas. Or teaching, nationwide, a new generation how to camp.

By Heather Ramsay, 20 May 2011


Totem Poles: Myth and Fact

From cultural emblems to kitsch souvenirs, it seems everyone takes a different view of this iconic Northwest art form. A Tyee interview.

By Heather Ramsay, 31 Mar 2011


'Beyond Eden', a Musical Set on Haida Gwaii

Bill Reid, a suicide and the ethics of 'rescuing' totems inhabit Cultural Olympiad play.

By Heather Ramsay, 15 Jan 2010


The Haida Challenge: An Unofficial Account

'All That We Say Is Ours' author Ian Gill on Haida Gwaii's 'provocative' politics, his reluctant subject Guujaaw, and more.

By Heather Ramsay, 26 Oct 2009


Did You Want Your Milk Raw?

Unpasteurized milk activists are testing the law by making it more available in BC.

By Heather Ramsay, 11 Sep 2009


Life without ferries on Haida Gwaii

By Heather Ramsay, 13 Jan 2009


'Never Shoot a Stampede Queen'

Author Mark Leiren-Young on small town newspapers, Cariboo culture, country loving, and more.

By Heather Ramsay, 22 Dec 2008


First Nations wary of Harper majority: Chief Phillip

By Heather Ramsay, 14 Oct 2008


Is there a First Nations vote?

By Heather Ramsay, 9 Oct 2008


Haida Gwaii’s loss of airmail makes voters mad

By Heather Ramsay, 7 Oct 2008


Will Skeena-Bulkley battle come down to a photo finish?

By Heather Ramsay, 16 Sep 2008


Defusing Family Violence

'Men Speak Up' targets silence, and pain, in resource towns.

By Heather Ramsay, 2 Jun 2008


Oil a Slippery Concern for BC's North Coast Natives

Jobs beckon, but Alaskan brings message of caution.

By Heather Ramsay, 24 Mar 2008


Turning the Corner on Suicide

Aboriginal youth share life saving insights.

By Heather Ramsay, 5 Dec 2007


Exhibiting Conflicts

Whose truth gets told in today's museums?

By Heather Ramsay, 12 Sep 2007


BC's Risky Back Roads

No standards, murky oversight, can make them deadly.

By Heather Ramsay, 4 Jul 2007


Carbon Sinks in Haida Gwaii

Pilot project could be boon for tiny community. If it works.

By Heather Ramsay, 8 Jun 2007


The Great Abalone Theft

Poachers savaging the species: Sentences still too light?

By Heather Ramsay, 9 May 2007


All Aboard the Vomit Comet

An islander takes a trip on the new northern ferry.

By Heather Ramsay, 13 Apr 2007


A Tyee Series

My Knotty Problem with Wood

I've hugged trees. But I also wanted a beautiful wooden house.

By Heather Ramsay, 16 Jan 2007


Ferry Goes Down, Quality of Service Rises

So says BC Ferries' new report. But not its customers.

By Heather Ramsay, 24 Nov 2006


Real Estate Boom Rolls North

Parcelling Haida Gwaii into 'trophy properties.' A special report.

By Heather Ramsay, 5 Oct 2006


Lost Ferry's Toll on North Coasters

As tourists cancel, locals demand answers.

By Heather Ramsay, 31 Mar 2006


A Tyee Series

Scallops, Uslurping the Oyster?

Smart aquaculture solutions are soaring.

By Heather Ramsay, 15 Mar 2006


Can't Slaughter Like You Used To

New meat regs may end small farmers' way of life.

By Heather Ramsay, 8 Feb 2006


Pulp Mills Aim to Spread Sludge on Crops

Toxic waste use fast tracked with little public input.

By Heather Ramsay, 29 Nov 2005


Landmark Great Bear Agreement Is Down to the Wire

Hopes, doubts rise as Premier faces signing deadline. A Tyee Special Report.

By Heather Ramsay, 11 Sep 2005


Hangin' with the 'Outflow'

That's what bureaucrats call kids who flee rural, small town BC.

By Heather Ramsay, 30 Jun 2005


Revolution on Haida Gwaii

Spring’s blockades yield big changes to logging and hunting.

By Heather Ramsay, 21 Jun 2005


Who Decides on Mines that Pollute?

One lake-killing plan, opposed by First Nations, highlights a growing controversy.

By Heather Ramsay, 2 Jun 2005


Alcan Makes Power an Election Issue

Kitimat is furious at the company for exporting taxpayer subsidized electricity while cutting jobs.

By Heather Ramsay, 11 May 2005


Candidates Court First Nations Voters

But one native prof scorns voting at all, calling it a ‘smiling high five’ to oppressors.

By Heather Ramsay, 8 Apr 2005


Haida Blockaders Vow ‘As Long as It Takes’

The standoff is over who controls and benefits from logging on Haida Gwaii.

By Heather Ramsay, 24 Mar 2005


Taxing the Fish

Sport fishing reels in money, but too much swims away say coastal local governments. A TYEE SPECIAL REPORT

By Heather Ramsay, 8 Mar 2005


Who Owns the Healing Secrets of Plants?

As the Haida know, the rainforest can yield cures for sickness. But sharing such knowledge may create other ills.

By Heather Ramsay, 20 Jan 2005


Keeping Alive the Haida Tongue

'Every word is precious' says Diane Brown, one of a team painstakingly preserving a rich oral language.

By Heather Ramsay, 5 Jan 2005


'Great Bear' Economy Goes after $200 Million

Private donors will kick in $60 million, pending government matches, for sustainable coastal push.

By Heather Ramsay, 26 Nov 2004


Offshore Drilling Divides B.C.'s North

Support for lifting the drilling ban is hardly solid in B.C.’s north. It depends where currents might sweep pollution, and money.

By Heather Ramsay, 9 Nov 2004


Why Wait? Small Town Operating Rooms Are Empty

Bulkley Valley offers a waiting list cure: Bring surgeons to rural hospitals where operating rooms stand idle.

By Heather Ramsay, 22 Sep 2004


Can B.C.'s North Be Saved?

Northern towns grapple with a shifting economy, government cutbacks, and doubts about whether the rural way of life is worth saving.

By Heather Ramsay, 2 Sep 2004