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Coordinates: 54°46′05″N 101°51′51″W / 54.76806°N 101.86417°W / 54.76806; -101.86417

Flin Flon
—  City  —

Flin Flon is located in Manitoba
Flin Flon
Location of Flin Flon in Manitoba
Coordinates: 54°46′05″N 101°51′51″W / 54.76806°N 101.86417°W / 54.76806; -101.86417
Country Canada Canada
Province  Manitoba
Founded 1927
Incorporated (city) January 1, 1933
 - Mayor Tom Therien
 - Council Flin Flon City Council
 - MP Niki Ashton
 - MLA Gerard Jennissen
Area [1]
 - Land 11.55 km2 (4.5 sq mi)
Elevation 299 m (980 ft)
Population (2006)
 - Total 5,594
Time zone CST (UTC-6)
 - Summer (DST) CDT (UTC-5)
Postal code R8A
Area code(s) 204

Flin Flon (pop. 5,594 in 2006 census) is a Canadian mining city located on the border with Manitoba and Saskatchewan, a situation not unlike Lloydminster, which shares its border with Alberta and Saskatchewan. The majority of the city is located within the province of Manitoba.





Dog Sled Race (1954).

Flin Flon was founded in 1927 by Hudson Bay Mining and Smelting (HBM&S) to exploit the large copper and zinc ore resources in the region. In the 1920s HBM&S invested in a railway, mine, smelter, and 101 megawatt hydroelectric power plant at Island Falls, Saskatchewan. By 1928 the rail line reached the mine.

The town grew considerably during the 1930s as farmers, left impoverished by the Great Depression, abandoned their farms and came to work at the mines. The municipality was incorporated on January 1, 1933 and in 1970 the community reached city status. The city has continued to be a mining centre, with the development of several mines adding to its industrial base. With a scenic setting and a number of nearby lakes, Flin Flon has also become a moderately popular tourist destination.

The statue of Josiah Flintabbatey Flonatin.

Origin of the name

The town's name is taken from the lead character in a paperback novel, The Sunless City by J. E. Preston Muddock. A prospector named Tom Creighton found the book in the wilderness. The story is about a man named Josiah Flintabbatey Flonatin, who piloted a submarine through a bottomless lake. Upon passing through a hole lined with gold, he found a strange underground world.

When Tom Creighton discovered a rich vein of almost pure copper, he thought of the book and called it Flin Flon's mine. The town that sprang up around the mine adopted the name. Flin Flon shares with Tarzana, California, the distinction of being named after a character in a science fiction novel.

The character of "Flinty" is of such importance to the identity of the city that the local Chamber of Commerce commissioned the minting of a $3.00 coin, which was considered legal tender within the city during the year following its issue. A statue representing Flinty was designed by cartoonist Al Capp and is one of the points of interest of the city.

Marijuana production

Flin Flon gained international notoriety in 2002 when the Government of Canada awarded a four-year contract to a Saskatoon, Saskatchewan-based company for the production of medicinal marijuana. Medicinal marijuana is only available in Canada with a doctor's prescription. Canadian users of medicinal marijuana must agree to provide information to Health Canada for research purposes.

Prairie Plant Systems, based in Saskatoon, has used an inactive underground copper/zinc drift owned by the Hudson Bay Mining and Smelting Company to produce approximately 400 kilograms of medicinal marijuana annually. The entire operation is several hundred metres under Flin Flon for security and climate control reasons.

Since the original stock of marijuana seeds were obtained from Royal Canadian Mounted Police drug raids, there was some lack of consistency in the early crops of medicinal marijuana. After selective use of seeds from the first crop, subsequent generations have shown to have a more consistent quality.

As of 2009, Prairie Plant Systems has discontinued operation at the mine, due to the ending of the lease and the impending closure of the Trout Lake mine.[2]


Flin Flon has a subarctic continental climate, with a wide range in seasonal temperatures. It has warm summers and very cold winters. Temperatures in January have an average low of −25 °C (−13.0 °F) and an average high of −16 °C (3.2 °F). Temperatures in July have an average high of 24 °C (75.2 °F) and an average low of 13 °C (55.4 °F).[3]

Climate data for Flin Flon
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °C (°F) 9.5
Average high °C (°F) -16.2
Average low °C (°F) -24.5
Record low °C (°F) -46.1
Precipitation mm (inches) 16.8
Source: Environment Canada[4] 2009-04-25
Lake Athapapuskow, near Bakers Narrows Provincial Park and the airport; the photo was taken in late May, demonstrating that snow is possible (though unlikely) even that late in the year.


Flin Flon straddles the provincial border of Manitoba and Saskatchewan, with the majority of the city being located in Manitoba. The 2001 census reported 6,000 residents in the Manitoba portion and only 267 in the Saskatchewan section; although Creighton, Saskatchewan (population of 1,502 inhabitants), also happens to lie adjacent Flin Flon. Due to the zig-zagging nature of the Saskatchewan-Manitoba border, the Saskatchewan section of town lies south of the Manitoba Section (not west).

A majority of Flin Flon's geography is made of rock, hence the nickname "The city built on rock". Because of the city's rocky geography, agriculture is not possible, although, 130 km south east in The Pas, Manitoba, grain farming can be found.


A DC Electric Locomotive on display at the Flin Flon Museum.


Flin Flon is accessed by Manitoba Provincial Trunk Highway 10 and Saskatchewan Highway 167. The city has daily Greyhound and Grey Goose bus service. The city also runs a small public bus system.[5]


The city operates Flin Flon Airport (YFO), which is located southeast of the city. The airport has a single 1,524m asphalt runway, and has regular flights to and from Winnipeg through Calm Air and Bearskin Airlines.


The Hudson Bay Railway operates railway freight service on its railway line between The Pas and Flin Flon.


The image on the left shows pollution indicated by yellow, which were seeded by the aerosols from the copper smelter in Flin Flon. Pollution is particularly noticeable from satellites in areas where the air is otherwise clean.

Main Employers

The city built on rock - HBM&S stack. Utilidor in foreground carries municipal sewer and water services.
Flin Flon Manitoba Five Largest Employers
Company Service Number of Employees
Hudson Bay Mining & Smelting Mining 1,440
North of 53 Consumers Co-op Cooperative 75
Victoria Inn Hotel 57
MTF/Northern Freightway Ltd. Freight Trucking 37
Alexander's Auto Ranch Automotive Supplies and Service 30



The economy of Flin Flon is primarily based on copper and zinc mining, in particular Hudson Bay Mining & Smelting's Trout Lake Mine, Callinan Mine and 777 Mine.[7] Although processing of any sulfide material (in this case zinc) usually emits large amounts of sulfur dioxide, the HBM&S plant uses a zinc pressure leaching process which greatly reduces emissions.



Flin Flon is the home of the Flin Flon Bombers of the Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League and the birthplace of NHL great and Hall of Fame member Bobby Clarke. As captain of the team, he lead the Philadelphia Flyers to NHL Championships in the 1970s, and was also a star on Team Canada 1972 in the Summit Series. NHLer Eric Nesterenko also hails from Flin Flon.



The Reminder - Monday, Wednesday and Friday - Flin Flon's only newspaper.


Cottage North Magazine - local interest, local stories, and local people - published January, March, May, July, September, and November.

Northroots Magazine a bi-monthly (every two months) regional publication


AM Radio

  • CFAR 590 Plays a mix of everything.

FM Radio


CBWBT first went on the air in June, 1962. The station broadcast kine recordings sent to the transmitter from CBWT. On March 1, 1969 the province-wide microwave system replaced the kine recordings, citizens of Flin Flon have had access to live television since then.[8]

Law and government


The operations of the City of Flin Flon are administered by the City Council, who set the policies. City Council consists of a Mayor and 6 Councillors who are elected and serve a term of four years. The current council were elected on October 25, 2006, and consists of the following members:

Flin Flon Manitoba City Council
Position Name
Mayor Tom Therien
Councillor George Fontaine
Councillor Bill Hanson
Councillor Cal Huntley
Councillor Karen MacKinnon
Councillor Colleen McKee
Councillor David Kennedy



Flin Flon is in the southwest corner of the provincial electoral district of the same name. It is the only urban centre within the district. The current Member of the Legislative Assembly is NDP Member Gerard Jennissen, who has held the office since 1995.


Flin Flon is in the federal riding of Churchill. The current Member of Parliament is NDP member Niki Ashton, who defeated Tina Keeper in 2008.

See also


External links

Travel guide

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From Wikitravel


Flin Flon is a city in Manitoba, it is landlocked and on the boarder with Saskatchewan. Its main industry is mining, and the town is dominated by the mine's smokestack. The town is largely constructed on exposed rock face, giving it a surreal, almost lunar, atmosphere.


Sleep at the Orland Motel.

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