Another comic based on events from my field work this past summer~ Kevin, one of my fellow techs, was SUCH a fanboy for the cute birds up there, especially Red Phalaropes. They are pretty adorable. The perspective is kind of wonky in the first panel.. Kevin is about 6′3″ and the bird is like, 6 inches long. (Oh and Kevin is literally Makoto from Free - he used to be a lifeguard, he’s super tall and attractive and nice~)

Read more here~


Currently on my bench is this book about a 1875 voyage to the Arctic. This particular passage reminded me of when I lived in Chicago, and simultaneously made me glad I now live in a MUCH warmer place!

Also I absolutely love how the title looks like it has little icicles dripping down from the letters.

How to Make Traditional Snowshoes (and Ash Tree Identification).

Snowshoes were most likely developed in Asia then adapted in North America. Their design is quite possibly inspired by the Snowshoe Hare, whose large feet aid in dispersing weight over a larger surface area which helps in traversing deep snow.

Traditional snowshoes have a hardwood frame with rawhide lacings. In addition to distributing the weight, snowshoes are generally raised at the toe for maneuverability. They must not accumulate snow, hence the latticework, and require bindings to attach them to the feet.

The best quality wood for making snowshoes is Ash. Ash is a very light, mold resistant wood used as base so as to weave rawhide or basswood into a central lattice which then holds ones foot. This type of snowshoe is probably the most time-consuming to make but also the most effective. By soaking the wood in water and some patient bending over a fire, you can bend a carved ash branch around into an oval to be used as a snowshoe base. Rawhide or cured basswood can be used as reinforcement and footholds, with sinew latticework.

#Survival #Bushcraft #Primitive #PrimitiveSurvival #Snowshoe #Snowshoeing #Snowshoes #TraditionalSnowshoes #Inuit #Eskimo #Arctic #Sinew #Woodwork #Woodcraft #Leather #Latticework #AshTree #SHTF #SnowshoeHare #Winter


after four thousand years in canada’s arctic, the quimmiq - inuktituk for the canadian eskimo dog (canis familiaris borealis) - face imminent extinction, due in large part to a policy of eradication by the royal canadian mounted police meant to force the inuit into government settlement.

brian ladoon, whose dogs we see here near churchill, manitoba, has been breeding quimmiq for over forty years and is largely responsible for maintaining the species.

so it was with much trepidation that brian noticed a group of polar bears, who eat quimmiq, approaching his dogs one day in 1992. though most of his dogs became quite defensive, one of them playfully ventured up to a polar bear and the two got on like old firends.

every year since, the polar bears will stop by ladoon’s place to play with the dogs on their way to the newly iced over hudson bay.  “the last dogs of winter” is a 2011 documentary on brian ladoon’s efforts. (photos)

Bones of hunted mammoth show early human presence in Arctic

NEW YORK (AP) – The remains of a mammoth that was hunted down about 45,000 years ago have revealed the earliest known evidence of humans in the Arctic.

Marks on the bones, found in far northern Russia, indicate the creature was stabbed and butchered. The tip of a tusk was damaged in a way that suggests human activity, perhaps to make ivory tools.

With a minimal age estimate of 45,000 years, the discovery extends the record of human presence in the Arctic by at least about 5,000 years.

The site in Siberia, near the Kara Sea, is also by far the northernmost sign of human presence in Eurasia before 40,000 years ago, Vladimir Pitulko of the Russian Academy of Science in St. Petersburg and co-authors reported in a paper released Thursday by the journal Science. Read more.

As the Arctic Erodes, Archaeologists Are Racing to Protect Ancient Treasures

A headless body, stretched out along the beach, appears through the smudged window of our ATV as we sail across the sand. There’s a windy lawlessness up here along the Chukchi Sea; I’m reassured by the rifle lashed to the lead ATV in the caravan. The archaeologist at the helm passes the decaying creature without pause. Anne Jensen has seen many headless walruses before—this one was likely already dead when it washed ashore and was relieved of its tusks. Jensen’s not worried about poachers; the rifle is for polar bears—the Arctic’s fiercest of predators. And Jensen seems entirely capable of staying calm and slamming a bullet into one.

We’re just south of Barrow, Alaska, heading to an archaeological site at a place called Walakpa Bay. It’s a grassy coastline that’s been occupied by semi-nomadic native Alaskans for at least 4,000 years. Their story, told in material remains, is scattered across the landscape we traverse at 60 kilometers per hour, past flocks of ducks and eroding bluffs. Most archaeologists mine the soil to better understand how the animals, landscape, and climate of the past may have shaped a culture. Read more.