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Old 03-17-2008, 11:22 PM
 
Location: Currently living @ the Top of the World in Barrow Alaska
144 posts, read 651,878 times
Reputation: 66

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Welcome to the top of the world. BARROW- ALASKA - 99723




This scene was on the state wide news last fall, My good close friend Ernie Phillips from the village of wainwright. Ernie was my hard workng apprentice back in 1989. I was elctrical forman for three villages during the CIP/RELI project, from 1988 - 1990 I have taught many people in many villages the basics of electrical theory and other asociated infomration they needed to learn.

This is August of last year. it is still cold but once you start walking on the beach, you need to take that outer layer off for a while. I never knew at the time when we were watching this whale feeding off the bottom, that behind us was a Television Crew from one of the local stations in Anchorage.

When I met Ernie the next day. he was all excited that both of us were in that short tv video segment..

This last August was the first time I had seen Ernie and his wife since 1990 !! What a good time we had that day together.



Outside of the Stauqpak, I see a familiar site.. A Whaling Captain wearing a crew jacket. All of the whaling captains design and give jackets to the members of their crew.. This is all about team work. a group of people acting togetheR as one.




These wonderful people have "values" that are very important to DAILY LIVING



Inupiaq Values:

these are used with permission of the North Slope Borough School Dissrict and the City of Barrow Alaska. they are free for all to download and LEARN FROM.


Unfortunately these images are not the size I had hoped for:
and thus the "english" is difficult to read. so for those who can't understand the Inupiaq words (chuckle) I will post the english translation below :


COMPASSION
Though the environment is harsh and cold, our ancestors learned to live with warmth, kindness, caring and compassion.



AVOIDANCE OF CONFLICT
The Iņupiaq way is to think positive, act positive, speak positive and live positive.



LOVE AND RESECT FOR OUR ELDERS AND ONE ANOTHER
Our Elders model our traditions and ways of being. They are a light of hope to younger generations.
May we treat each other as our Elders have taught us.



COOPERATION
Together we have an awesome power to accomplish anything



HUMOR
Indeed, laughter is the best medicine!



SHARING
It is amazing how sharing works. Your acts of giving always come back.



FAMILY AND KINSHIP
As Iņupiaq people we believe in knowing who we are and how we are related to one another. Our families bind us together.



KNOWLEDGE OF LANGUAGE
"With our language we have an identity. It helps us to find out who we are in our mind and in our heart."
Lee Barger, 1986 Iņupiat Language Convention.



HUNTING TRADITIONS
Reverence for the land, sea and animals is the foundation of our hunting traditions.



RESPECT FOR NATURE
Our Creator gave us the gift of our surroundings.
Those before us placed ultimate importance on respecting this magnificent gift for their future generations.



HUMILITY
Our hearts command we act on goodness. Expect no reward in return. This is part of our cultural fiber.


SPIRITUALITY
We know the power of prayer. We are a spiritual people.

Last edited by Majik_Imaje; 03-17-2008 at 11:35 PM..

 
Old 03-18-2008, 12:32 PM
 
Location: alaska
471 posts, read 1,164,108 times
Reputation: 344
I REALY enjoy all your pictures. I am interested in how the boats are made and the materials used, Would like to see any close-up pictures (if you have any to share) of boats and Traditional weapons used. Thanks!
 
Old 03-18-2008, 06:00 PM
 
Location: Barrow, Alaska
3,539 posts, read 6,564,192 times
Reputation: 1829
Default Umiaq skin boats at Barrrow Alaska

Quote:
Originally Posted by mongazid View Post
I REALY enjoy all your pictures. I am interested in how the boats are made and the materials used, Would like to see any close-up pictures (if you have any to share) of boats and Traditional weapons used. Thanks!
Wikipeadia has an article on umiaq boats.

Also, there are two or three photo essays on my web site showing at least some of the details. (I keep missing opportunities in early March to photograph preparation of the skins before they are applied to the boat, so that is not shown.)

Barrow and the North Slope in Photographs

One article is listed on the main page, but look at "whaling" also,
where there is another article about umiaq boats.
 
Old 03-18-2008, 09:44 PM
 
1 posts, read 11,380 times
Reputation: 10
Majik_Imaje,
Really enjoyed viewing the photos that you posted on all 3 threads; Barrow Alaska-Top of the World, Eskimo Models@30 below zero and Photo-Essay of Life in the Arctic-Alaska.
The narration from your perspective was very interesting reading and an added bonus to the photographs. Please do continue with your photo essays and stories. I believe that by sharing pics and telling stories from that area it helps readers to see and understand a little of how native people from the North live their lives.
I have a friend from Barrow and he is also a very good storyteller. Most of the native people from my area here in Southwest Alaska also enjoy telling and hearing stories about everyday life and events. Quyana
 
Old 03-18-2008, 10:21 PM
 
Location: Bethel, Alaska
21,363 posts, read 33,054,211 times
Reputation: 13770
Nukalpiaq, camiungusit?
 
Old 04-30-2008, 12:10 AM
 
Location: Currently living @ the Top of the World in Barrow Alaska
144 posts, read 651,878 times
Reputation: 66
Nukalpiaq
Junior Member
: Thanks you very much for your kind words.

I will provide the information you requested shortly,

again, thanks for your interest.
 
Old 04-30-2008, 01:48 AM
 
Location: Currently living @ the Top of the World in Barrow Alaska
144 posts, read 651,878 times
Reputation: 66
New skins on an umiaq is quite a chore and it takes a long time, many steps.

New skins are not put on each umiaq each year, usually at least two seasons are all that can be safely used.

Here is an image created recently here in Barrow, Point Hope does things much different than Barrow does, in many aspects.


This skins have to be stretched, then stretched some more, this process takes time, patience and of course the skill & knowledge of how to do this correctly, many lives depend on this craft being 'seaworthy'.

Many miles from the ocean, we can tell from here on land, there is open water, by looking at the sky, it will show you, by the reflections on the clouds if the lead has opened even though it is many miles out of sight. just keep your eyes on the sky.



some of these skins are quite thin, you can easily see right through them, in certain areas.

 
Old 04-30-2008, 09:28 AM
 
Location: Anchorage, AK
29 posts, read 101,349 times
Reputation: 20
What time of year do they go whale hunting in Barrow? Is it possible for someone who lives in Bethel to come participate/observe this? I am moving from Indiana and want to soak up all of the native alaskan atmosphere possible. Is it costly to fly from Bethel to Barrow?
 
Old 04-30-2008, 12:00 PM
 
Location: Barrow, Alaska
3,539 posts, read 6,564,192 times
Reputation: 1829
Quote:
Originally Posted by breezey514 View Post
What time of year do they go whale hunting in Barrow? Is it possible for someone who lives in Bethel to come participate/observe this? I am moving from Indiana and want to soak up all of the native alaskan atmosphere possible. Is it costly to fly from Bethel to Barrow?
There are two whale hunts in Barrow, one in the spring and one in the fall. The spring hunt is the "big deal" for locals, as it involves setting up camps on the ice and entails a great deal of community and crew effort. Outsiders are not particularly welcome, though there are ways to manage it if you are 1) diplomatic and 2) willing to work.

The fall hunt is different, as they use power boats from shore and only perhaps three people go out. They tow whales back and process them on shore though, where virtually anyone can come and take pictures, help, or just watch.

Spring whaling is NOW! It begins in March with boats being repaired, but actual whaling (depending on the weather) begins about the last week of April and continues until either they catch their quota or the weather gets too warm and the ice becomes too thin to support a whale. (They pull them up onto the ice for processing, and late in the year it is not uncommon to have the ice cave in and have to try it at a different location.)

Another time to visit is late June. From about the 20th until the end of the month, depending on how many whales were caught, there are Nalukataq (blanket toss) celebrations. These are an all day feast where the successful whaling crews feed the town. It starts with duck soup, and then for the rest of the day it's different kinds of whale meat all day long! And various games, the blanket toss, and other activities. It all ends with an Eskimo Dance starting at midnight. You may want to see whaling, but you really want to see Nalukataq!
 
Old 04-30-2008, 01:57 PM
 
Location: Currently living @ the Top of the World in Barrow Alaska
144 posts, read 651,878 times
Reputation: 66
Price of airfare from Anchorage to Barrow is about $400 each direction, no discount for round trip tickets.

I have been privliged to have been; invited on and particpated on 5 sacred whale hunts, I have had many captains invite me to participate on their crews here in Barrow also.

Edwardsons, crew, Patkotaq crew & I was a 'baker' for another crew last fall.
George & Maggie Ahmaogak, there was at least a dozen or so more people on their crew. We received a huge share of George's whale.

I can assure you that many more than 3 people go out on the fall whale hunt.

Most captains will allow people to become part of their crew, as there is such a huge amount of work to accomplish out on that ice pack. but realize this, if you do obtain permission to go out there.. that captain has to pay a lot of money to feed you 3 - 5 times each day. for that two month long period.

Being physically fit to endure the temps out there is another thing to consider, Barrow does it much differently than Point Hope does.

Point Hope does everything in the old traditional manner(s) of whaling.
and it is the only one that does it in this manner. Pt. Hope is about 1,500 years older than Barrow.

Bill Hess has been up here for 30 years recording whale hunt after whale hunt for 3 decades, his collection is vast, but it is all in black & white. He has published a book on Inupiaq whaling,
"The gift of the whale" It is a must to read to understand the Inupiaq way of life.

I received an e-mail from people in the Netherlands that were very upset that none of the whaling captains in Pt. Hope had written back to them to invite them to 'take' photographs.

People want to 'take' .. photographs.. but what are you willing to 'give' to these people ? giving will open far more doors than asking to 'take'. !!

I have relatives in all of these coastal villages as I married into an Inupiaq family in 1982. I have a very intimate perspective of this culture because I have been part of it for close to 30 years time.

Living out on the Ocean Ice, is quite the experience of being thrust into a different world. It is something you have to experience to fully understand completly.



Sometimes work is performed around the clock for days at a time. Being exposed to 24 hour sunlight enables you to become 'solar powered' It is very easy to stay awake and alert for 3 days or longer, as long as you stay in that sunlight.

The North Slope Borough has a book that is extensive documentation on the Inupiaq way of life and as far as I know this book is free.

I will find it and post it here.



they also published a book using all of my photos in 1984, I am trying to find a copy of that elusive book.
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