Atlin is often referred to as the Switzerland of the North. The name itself, which comes from the Tlingit word “atlah,” actually means “Big Water.” Both of these descriptions are suitable for this small isolated community that sits on the province’s largest natural lake and is surrounded by massive mountain ranges and ice fields. Due to Atlin’s remoteness from the rest of BC – more than 250km/155mi – the community feels more connected to the Yukon and Alaska. Many community and regional groups such as First Nation societies and the education system are linked across the border.
Atlin formed during the Klondike Gold Rush. The first gold was discovered in this remote area in Pine Creek in 1898, and soon after prospectors congregated here in search of fortune; the population quickly jumped to 10,000. The good years lasted until the Great Depression in the 1930s. After that the community slowly began to shrink until residents numbered only 75 in the 1960s. The community rebounded somewhat – today’s population is approximately 400.
Atlin today is full of enthusiastic citizens, who sometimes feel more of a connection to their neighbours to the north, Yukon, and to the west, Alaska, than their fellow British Columbians. Almost half of the community’s residents leave for the winter, but they always come back. A mix of outdoor adventurers, artists, miners, and hard workers make for residents who admire the nature around them and rely on it for employment.
Mining, tourism, artisans, forestry, ranching, service industries, value-added wood manufacturing and government agencies
Town Population: 400 (www.hellobc.com/atlin.aspx)
Health Administrative Information
Health Authority: Northern Health
Health Service Delivery Area: Northwest
Regional District: Stikine
Rural Designation: RSA community
RRP Designation: A
RRP Points: 51.25
Practitioners + Clinic information
General Practitioner: 2 (www.cpsbc.ca)
Clinic Atlin Health Centre, Walk-In Clinic 3rd Street, Atlin BC V0W 1A0 P: 250 651-7677
The Atlin Hospital is the first line health care service provider for the community. It provides out patient services, and walk in Emergency service with transfer out to Whitehorse.
Atlin Health Centre Box 330, 164 Third Street Atlin, BC, V0W 1A0 P: 250 651-7677 | F: 250 651-7687
Outpatient services are available: public health, pre- and postnatal care, infant care, and child care.
There are two registered nurses on call during the day and at night.
There is walk-in emergency care services, with transfer to Whitehorse General Hospital as needed.
This health centre provides outpatient services for pre- and postnatal care, and infant care.
BC Ambulance Services provides coverage to this community.
Home Support Services Atlin Health Centre Box 330, 164 Third Street Atlin, BC, V0W 1A0 P: 250 651-7677 | F: 250 651-7687
Occupational Therapy is available in Prince Rupert.
Community Rehabilitation Prince Rupert Community Health Centre 300 - 3rd Avenue West Prince Rupert, BC, V8J 1L4 P: 250 622-6380
Mental Health and Addictions
Atlin Mental Health and Addictions Services Tlingit Social & Health Program Office Robinson Street Atlin, BC, V0W 1A0 P: 250 651-2189 Services: Provides outpatient mental health and addiction services. Mental Health Counselling Taku River Tlingit First Nation 25 Taku Drive Atlin, BC, V0W 1A0 P: 250 651-7935
Services: Provides one-on-one and group counselling services for community members of all ages, who are dealing with depression, grief, anger, suicide, and trauma.
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