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High in the Arctic .. .. Eskimo !

Discussion in 'All Other Images Forum' started by Majik Imaje, Jan 19, 2008.

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  1. Majik Imaje

    Majik Imaje Well-Known Member

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    Hello all !! My name is David. I live in the Arctic, in Alaska, 200 miles above the arctic circle.

    Point Hope Alaska is the oldest continually inhabited settlement or village in all of North America. Life can accurately be traced back 3,000 years to this one spot of land. 800 residents in this tiny village.

    It used to have a population of over 10,000 Inupiaq, then in the mid 1800's the whaling companies arrived and we were reduced to just 190 people.

    [​IMG]

    Thanks to google I can show you where I live, in a small Inupiaq Eskimo whaling village, We live from the sea and we hunt the; mighty bowhead whale.

    I have an impressive photo essay to share with this community. Complete with amazing stories & text.

    I went on a whale hunt and my first challenge was how do you survive outside @ 50 below zero, many miles out on the ocean ice. Sleeping outside with no tents for two months !

    My second challenge was how am I going to process these 60 rolls of color film, when I have no source of water except to melt snow !!

    Come along on a journey and learn the Eskimo way from the comfort of your home or office.

    This is home for two months. right here, 24/7.

    [​IMG]

    This image was created @ exactly midnight in Mid May. This is our home for the next two months. this is where we eat, sleep, wait and watch and hunt the mighty bowhead whale.
     
  2. Bindii

    Bindii Guest

    So I am guessing that shopping is not one of your hobbies then? :grin:

    And welcome David... thanks for all the info on where you live... very interesting btw.. why don't you also tell us a little about yourself as well...

    and of course post your images for critique in the forum also... :)
     
  3. BarryM

    BarryM Guest

    wow now thats remote, lovely shots and great info...... now broadband, im guessing its not wireless :Dm
     
  4. Majik Imaje

    Majik Imaje Well-Known Member

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    I am originally from Boston Mass.

    I left Boston for the Adventure of Alaska as Boston was over-run, too many people and too much gridlock. I have had it. I left.

    while working as an electrician in Anchorage, I was sent north to this village for just 3 weeks to wire two construction camps.

    When the job finished, I quit the company and I stayed.

    [​IMG]

    I fell in love with the people, the enviorment, & the Arctic.
    40 below zero and these children are hunting the mighty bowhead whale!

    Well, they are pretending.

    Here are their parents with the real thing."

    [​IMG]

    7 MILES OUT on the ocean ice. this is where we hunt for two months. The tents in the background are for the women, who do all of the incredibly hard work. They are 1/2 - 3/4 of a mile behind the hunters who live at the edge of the ice. They live outside for the entire two months. this is where we sleep.

    How do you keep warm ?? @ 50 below zero sleeping outside ?
    Eskimo Technology time tested for many THOUSANDS of years..

    We have many tricks that you have never thought of or heard of.

    It is these tricks we employ that allow us to survive in this the harshest climate on the face of the earth.
     
  5. Majik Imaje

    Majik Imaje Well-Known Member

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    I have my choice of dial up, adsl, & wireless

    Let me introduce you to some of my "friends".

    [​IMG]

    Daisy Della Fay Age 3

    Dressed in traditional native dress, it is 30 below zero.

    These children play out all day long at sub zero temps.

    [​IMG]

    We are not on land, here, we are 7 miles out on the ocean ice, This is home for two months.
    [​IMG]
     
  6. BarryM

    BarryM Guest

    what a life you have, i would drop everything for a life of survival like that... where do i sign up.
     
  7. Di O

    Di O Here a lot

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    Wow, how fascinating.

    I'm looking forward to seeing and hearing about more of your life there.
     
  8. Majik Imaje

    Majik Imaje Well-Known Member

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    Thank you all for your wonderful words.

    BarryMoir it is as simple as taking a plane to Alaska (Anchorage).

    Then your best bet is to pay an additional 400 to fly to the top of the world Barrow Alaska.

    A person can enjoy the best of "both" lives up here. Jobs are plentiful, the rate of pay for skill people is 25-45 an hour.

    Teachers are in great demand as well as many other job classifications.

    Point Hope. well that is a different story. very few jobs. But I would not trade the arctic for any other place in the whole wide world.

    I came to this village (Point Hope) for just three weeks. That was 30 YEARS ago !

    I will amaze and astound you with photos and text that will keep you spell bound.

    Many miles out on the ocean ice, I came across this child sitting on the seat of a "snow-machine". As I approached her, I asked may I create an image of you? she smiled and said yes. As I brought up the camera to compose a striking image, she began to smile. I said NO!! Please do not do that. I want you to look past me, pretend I am not even here. I spent 1/2 hour talking with this child, I only exposed ONE FRAME of film. I knew what I wanted long before I brought the camera up to compose an image. Then I saw "that" look, yes yes yes. -=[click]=-

    [​IMG]


    Life here is simple, harsh, and extremly cold & violent winds year around.

    Point Hope only has 800 people, other villages have as little as 200 or less

    Barrow has 5,000 !!

    [​IMG]

    Aaka & Aapa - Grandmother & Grandfather,

    My four sons, Great - Grandparents.

    Majik Imaje are the initals of my four Inupiaq sons.!

    MarkAndrew, Jesse, Isaiah, Khristopher = MAJIK

    Imaje are the same names cept our last name is EVES.
     
  9. Majik Imaje

    Majik Imaje Well-Known Member

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    Lets take a trip out to the ocean ice and see what happens when an entire community moves out to the ocean ice to live for two months or longer.
    [​IMG]

    This is an extremly rough and brutal ride out to the ocean ice. This trail has to be chopped w/ pick & axe and hundreds of people blaze a trail, for seven miles, just to eat. 7 miles = 4 hard hours of riding just to get there. I was convinced that when this camera case was opened all of the lenses would be shattered from the constant banging of the sled as it hit the ice hard when we went over little hills.
    the front of the sled would go 4-5 feet into the air and come crashing down. I felt like I had just played a tackle football game with no equipment on, when I finally arrived at our camp. Whew what a rough ride. All of my lenses were ok.


    No one gets paid for all of this incredibly hard work.. Just the right to eat.

    [​IMG]

    TEMP: 40 below zero, the wind is blowing very hard from right to left in this image. That ice on the other side of the lead opening is moving very quickly due to the incredibly strong North Wind.

    Do not watch that ice on the other side for any length of time. I found out the hard way and I constantly had these people on their sides laughing at this dumb city boy from Boston.

    That ice, when you stare at it for any length of time will cause you to hallucinate. At some point in time, that ice will stop, and you will experience the sensation of moving in the opposite direction. I was constantly falling down and falling over.! Much to the delight and entaining value I played out here on this ice pack in the middle of the Chukchi Sea in the Bering Strait of upper Alaska.
    Fresh hot food many times each day. But how do you suppose we get delicious fresh drinking water way out here miles on the ocean ice?

    We melt snow, for water to clean, but for cooking and drinking we need tons of delicious fresh drinking water. We are 7 miles out on the frozen ocean which is SALT WATER ice. Now where or how do you think we obtain all the fresh drinking water that is absolutelly delicious, from way out here ?
     
  10. robbie-doux

    robbie-doux Here a lot

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    Welcome to the forum.
    Your story is fascinating, your photo's are wonderful,a and yoru subjects are beautiful.

    I'ts a pleasure to learn about your way of life!.
     
  11. Dotty.c

    Dotty.c Here a lot Honorary Life Member

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    wow thats the longest welcome thread ever, but it's facinating. Welcome and enjoy your time here.
     
  12. kya

    kya Banned

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    Wow what an amazing life you have and thats just from seeing your pics..welcome to the forum..have fun! :)
     
  13. olivia

    olivia Here a lot

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    ..can you tell us more..? ..oh and looking forward to other pictures also..
     
  14. Majik Imaje

    Majik Imaje Well-Known Member

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    I promise you spectacular photos, edge of the seat "text" that will leave you amazed, astounded at this most unique way of life that so few people ever see or experience.!!

    A whole communtiy living out here, 3/4 a mile apart, hidden in the ice. Some families stay together. The amount of work, the amount of supplies, is astounding, incredible. Virtually anything you want to eat, is here!
    Eskimo food & "regular food".
    [​IMG]

    The Inupiaq peoples have been living in complete harmoney with all of the resources of the land, sea, & air, without ever depleting any of the resources !

    18 whaling Captains, & their crews are stretched out along the edge of the ice, waiting at the lead opening for animals to migrate.
    Each crew is about 3/4 a mile apart from each other with tents set up far from the edge of the ice on much "safer" ice.

    [​IMG]

    Changing film out here, was pure torture. 50 below zero, is brutal with this wind. I suffered immensly, only because I was stubborn and I would not listen.
    This is why your nose runs so much in the cold, use it! YUK ! no way !
    I am not going to do that, and as a result I suffered immensly.

    Kakiik (snot). use it??? Barf! when they told me what to do.. I was discusted, until, I just could not take the pain any longer. Take your gloves off. ?? I am freezing my ISO / ASA off big time. I can't move my fingers after changing film and I suffer. The pain is so intense and I can't move my fingers, So take your gloves OFF blow your nose into your hands and rub it all over and quickly put your gloves back on. yuk! WoWoW, when I finally gave in, I was amazed. INSTANTLY your hands are warm, they do not hurt when they warm up,( instantly) and they cannot get cold for the rest of the day.



    I am using camera(s) that do not require the use of batteries to function.

    Digital will not last out here in these temps for any extended length of time.
    2 months.. .. no place to go, cept sit, wait & watch.
    I am using Pentax K1000 & Mamiya RB67.
    These cameras were constantly encased in ice. They were sluggish but still functioned. When any of the controls were moved, the ice on the camera would crack, but the controls were functional.
    .

    [​IMG]

    This is extremly dangerous work, and anything can happen out here, and usually does. Just wait, watch, look & listen, this is our day, for weeks, months, sit and wait, watch

    [​IMG]

    This is a different world, a world of ice, a frozen world. A different planet if you will. One side of your face is sweating, the other side is being frost bit.
    face the opposite direction and it gets very uncomfortable.

    The sun is blinding, extremly bright from all the reflections from the ice.

    Because we are outside and exposed to 24 hour sunlight, you easily become "solar powered" and it is very easy to stay awake and alert for 3 days with no sleep. When your tired, just lean back on the sled and rest for a few hours and your good to go for another 3 days.



    [​IMG]

    A two month picnic, the best food ever. Fresh hot food, yummy! Yes but there is a price to pay for eating hot food.
     
  15. bartonflyer

    bartonflyer Here a lot

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    Interesting question - my guess is that you melt the snow rather than the ice because the snow is rainwater, rather than frozen salt water?

    Fascinating set of pictures and stories - please keep them coming

    Cheers
    Ian
     
  16. Majik Imaje

    Majik Imaje Well-Known Member

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    We melt snow to obtain water for WASHING DISHES, and cleaning, but for drinking & cooking, snow is yuk !!!

    we need delicous FRESH WATER. snow is awful tasting water. but it is great for washing dishes and personal use.

    but for deliciouis fresh drinking water it is all around us, frozen, and it is full of salt!!

    Eskimo technology, time tested for thousands of years.. ..

    take any large piece of ice, stand it up, brush all the snow off the top and the sides.. .. now wait!!

    As the sun beats down on that ice it will begin to become "clearer" in other words, the salt is settling inside that huge piece of ice.
    now as the ice becomes crystal clear, take your kettle and walk over and start to chop the ice at the top horizontally, Fill your kettle and when it is melted, the most delicous fresh water you have ever tasted !!!

    [​IMG]

    Every camp is set up identical, Each tent must be moved once per week as it starts to sink into the ice due to the heat from the home made wood stoves.

    Fresh doughnuts are made many times each day. How do you suppose they get that dough to rise in such a drafty tent when it is 50 below outside ?

    Once that dough is mixed it is put into a clean plastic bag, then the woman will place that bag under her parky in the same manner in which a child is carried. The heat from that person's back is sufficient to cause that dough to rise just right !!
     
  17. BarryM

    BarryM Guest

    wow, this is amazing mate, really is, keep it coming, we take all these basic things so forgranted here and yet out there with you its got to be thought about, carefully or it could mean a difference between life and death.

    Cant wait for the next installement.
     
  18. David Worthington

    David Worthington Here a lot Honorary Life Member

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    me neither...its brill... i have just turned the heating off so as i can get into it a bit better :grin:
     
  19. bartonflyer

    bartonflyer Here a lot

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    Fascinating - I'm struggling to understand the physics (or chemistry!) of how that works, possibly re-gelation - the sun melts a layer of ice which then re-freezes because of the extreme cold, but the freezing point of salt water is lower than pure water, so the the ice that forms first has a lower salt content - just as well this is a photography forum not a science one!!
    Cheers
    Ian
     
  20. Majik Imaje

    Majik Imaje Well-Known Member

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    Well the ice does not melt, the salt settles clear down to the bottom of that large piece of ice.

    We can speed up this process by placing that Piece of ice on sand!

    Sand will suck the salt down quicker.

    [​IMG]

    We do things different up here than what you would ever expect.

    I stated that a hot meal is yummy but you have to pay a price for it.~~

    this is what happens. When you eat that hot food, it is delicious and your body will relax, in other words it is not generating enough heat to keep you warm.

    In other words the price you pay for eating that way, is your gonna get cold(er) !

    Now once your body is all relaxed, you have to do something to get warm again.

    Hot food makes you lazy out here, you just want to lie down oh so relaxed and get some sleep.!

    We have tricks to keep very warm out here.

    Quaq = RAW Frozen caribou meat or Raw frozen fish.

    Are you cold ?? then pick up that hacksaw (see pic above).
    slice off some of the meat on those caribou ribs. Small strips, now swallow them whole, DO NOT CHEW,

    FILL YOUR STOMACH full with raw frozen meat or fish. This is a hunters breakfast and it will keep you warm all day long. And you will never get thirsty.

    When you fill your stomach full of quaq, your stomach has to work very hard to digest all the frozen meat or fish.

    YOU begin to generate body heat the likes of which you have never encountered. AT 30 below zero we are takinig clothes OFF, because we are too hot. (I am going to post a duplicate photo here,
    [​IMG]
    find the gentleman that has eaten qauq recently.. He had to take his parky off because he was too hot !

    A hunter will take a frozen fish, wrap it, and stick it in his boot and go out on the ice to hunt, He will walk for hours, when he is hungry he pulls that fish out, unwraps it and enjoys steamy hot fish, out in the middle of no where!!

    In other words, his body heat will cook that fish !
     
  21. Majik Imaje

    Majik Imaje Well-Known Member

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    A boyer is a person that will amaze you and protect you.

    YOU will never believe this in a hundred years !!

    At night, when the women go to sleep in the tents, they have a "boyer" that does all the chores.

    His job is to stay up all night long, alone, by himself.

    His chores include: chop wood, keep that wood stove fired up all night long.

    cut sicpan (seal blubber) with very sharp knives.

    Melt snow for washing out the thermoses,
    Make fresh water using Ice.
    Make hot coffee, hot tea, hot chocolate, and fill all thermoses and get them down to the hunters at the edge of the ice.

    Each whaling crew has 8 hunters a captain and 3-5 women to do all of the cooking and all of the incredibly hard work involved.

    A boyer must watch the wind in case it shifts, He must constantly keep a sharp lookout for "cracks" in the ice.

    He is armed with many rifles incase of a polar bear attack.

    So hand your lighter and your matches over to this 3 year old child and lie down and go to sleep, your in good hands, he is well trained !


    [​IMG]

    YES !! THREE YEARS OLD !!!

    I have seen and met many boyers out on the ice, that were this age !!
    I will never understand how a 3 year old can handle all of that responsibility.
     
  22. Kenny

    Kenny Guest

    Hi David

    my appologies for only just coming to this thread.First can I welcome you to the forum and wish you a happy time here.Second can I congratulate you on the most amazing thread its ever been my pleasure to read on any forum.I have found your photos to be awesome and the narative to be first class.You paint a picture of a people thats wonderful to read and is both educational and inspirational at the same time.Its doccumentary style is top notch and you are to be credited with the way you presented it.

    for me its been a pleasure to read

    best regards

    Kenny
     
  23. Majik Imaje

    Majik Imaje Well-Known Member

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    The entire village, the whole community moves out to the ice, the village itself is for all practical purposes, is empty, cept for a few elders, and new born infants.

    Every month certain women, must leave the ice,for a few days to a week, go home, you present too much of a danger for us out here.

    Whales & polar bears have a unique sense of smell .. .. for blood!

    [​IMG]

    The children are left out on the ice.. to learn !! There are plenty of people to take care of the children but they are not allowed down near the lead opening. It is too dangerous.

    Wait, watch, look. listen, this is our day 24/7 and plenty of things are happening out here, the day(s) rush by so quickly, what day of the week is it ? what month is it ? NO ONE CARES !!!
    This is just the most exciting time of the year for us. Excitement all day long.


    Fresh Caribou soup, Fresh duck soup, Lots of great food, 4- 5 times each day.

    Aquaq is getting ready to make some Caribou soup, Tuttu is the name for Caribou (2 - 2 ) two-two.

    Caribou meat is delicous, it contains NO FAT. grind up 3 pounds of caribou meat and fry it.. when finished there is less than 1/2 teaspoon of fat.

    It is delicious and it tastes much like beef, depending on how you cook it, our favorite way is to combine mushrooms, cheese & onions and make an

    Eskimo "tuttu & Cheese".

    [​IMG]

    It doesn't matter which camp site you visit, everything is set up identical no matter which camp your visiting.

    [​IMG]

    The wind is always from the North, and it is very strong, when that wind shifts to south wind. then the mass panic begins.!!!

    It takes 8 hours to set up a whaling camp out on the ocean ice. When that wind shifts to south wind we are gone in less than 20 minutes.. Ice is advancing in our direction and the mass panic is a mad dash to get off that ice pack.
    [​IMG]

    Everyone is running, those that don't have a ride, .. .. just run... someone will pick you up on that trail, but get the hell out of here now !!

    Once the evacuation begins, the 4 wheelers, & snowmachines, drop people off and return in a huge circle, not one piece of trash is ever left out on the ice. Everything is constantly kept neat and clean.

    This mad dash, scramble is called "Killigvuk".

    Back on land, whew, everyone is exhausted, and people are thirsty, where did we put this ? and where did we put that, Fresh coffee, tea, hot chocolate must be made, after the dishes are done.

    I doubt any of you women will ever complain about doing the dishes after seeing Irma Oktollik at work here, We are on land here, can't you tell? ha ha ha. it is 50 below, place your back to the wind to warm up.
    melt snow and wash the cups and dry them,! out in the wind, NO sense going back home, we stay out here and wait. (If possible).

    In the old days, they had no way to killigvuk, no vehicles and dogs were too valuable to take any distance out to the ice.
    So when the wind would shift south. They would grab a new born, strip that baby naked and hold it into the wind and move the child in the direction they wanted the wind to shift to, so they could stay out there.


    [​IMG]

    When we return to the ice a few days later, this is what happend to our camp site.

    [​IMG]

    This ice, once it gets moving, will run over and crush everything in its path.

    [​IMG]

    Home sweet frozen home.!!

    At night when that sun goes below the horizon in April, It really gets cold, Alapa is the Inupiaq name for cold, Now, depending on "how' you say that word, is how you convey to others how cold it really is.

    Alapa is cold Ah- lah-PAH is colder. the longer and louder it is pronounced is how to determine, what your up against.!

    Ahhh- lahhhhh-par is much colder ! if you can imagine anything colder than 50 below, & 60 mile per hour winds and that does happen quite frequently (with wind chills) We often hit 100 below zero !! and driving a snowmachine into that wind, for hundreds of miles, is the most brutal thing on earth imaginable !

    [​IMG]
     
  24. daviE-k

    daviE-k Well-Known Member

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    wow.. this thread is awesome! a real eye-opener! just shows that there are still parts of the world that cant be tamed with technology, and the only way to survive is to rely on your fellow man and your head!

    ill definatley be watching this thread develop! :D
     
  25. Majik Imaje

    Majik Imaje Well-Known Member

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    [​IMG]

    Danger warning: POLAR BEARS are not soft cuddly cute animals, they are ferocious beasts of prey that are extremly dangerous and very unpredictable.

    There is much you do not know about these animals, this short segment will teach you much about this magnificent animal, that should never be underestimated.

    ALL bears.. .. are left handed, they will always strike with the left PAW first!

    Even after a polar bear has been killed, that bear can still kill that hunter if he is not careful when that bear is opened up.
    The liver must be burnt and destroyed, anything that eats this will die!
    [​IMG]
    Admiral Perry on his expedition to the North Pole lost 3 members of his crew due to attempting to eat a polar bears liver, It is saturated with millions of units of Vitamin A. This is extremly toxic and deadly.
    when that bear has been opened up for gutting, skinning, etc.. A hunter must be extremly careful, not to get any of that "juice' on himself, gloves must be worn. Great care must be taken when cutting the liver out of the animal. the tubes must be tied to prevent leakage of this "JUICE" it contains tooo much, Vitamin A and just by getting some on your skin it will kill you!

    When the hunter is finished with the procedure of gutting that animal, any clothing that has "juice" on it must be burned and destroyed !

    Barrow Alaska 1940's Vincent Niigak was gutting a bear, and all was well and finished, His gloves were removed and burnt. His hands were cold and he brought up his hands to warm them by blowing on them close to his mouth. Unknown to him at the time of this event. The tiny-est speck of juice touched his lip.

    He Lived to tell about it in a very unusual way. He lived for many decades but he stood out in a most peculiar way.

    Eskimo's are darkskinned and with black hair. Vincent's appearance was white as snow. His skin, his hair. ALBINO. pure white skin, pure white hair. Everything was bleached white by that small miniscule amount of vitamin A on his skin.

    Everyone in Barrow knows of this famous hunter, He died in the late 1980s I believe. I have never had the pleasure to meet this famous man, but many have told me the same story in each and every village. His claim to fame was well known all over the area.

    A polar bear can run at speeds of over 40 miles per hour, they can attack without notice, out on the ocean ice. They are ferocious predators. Each month, certain women must get off the ice. go home. come back later in a week or so. get off the ice. you present too much of a danger out here for everyone.
    That bear can smell blood for many miles, these bears are extremly clever and will stop at nothing to eat, anything.

    Seals are their main food supply. A bear will sit over a breathing hole in the ice and cover his nose and eyes with its paws, and wait for a seal to surface to breathe. One quick look around by the seal, and it is all over,.. ... ... .. burp!

    BILLLY WEBER WAS OUT ON THE OCEAN ICE; and a polar bear came around the corner and ran towards Billy at full speed.
    Billy turned and ran. he had a .22 rifle with only one bullet left. he took off running, he had no choice but to run.. that bear was gaining on Billly as he ran for his life. Other hunters out on the ice saw this event unfold, but were too far away to offer any assistance. There is only one place to shoot a polar bear to kill it.
    that one vital spot is in the ear. While running for his life, with that bear quckly gaining on Billy he merly pointed that rifle back as he ran and took the shot.. .. ..
    .. .. Billy lived to tell about this and everyone up here knows of this famous event.

    That bear was that close, because Billy waited, and waited until the last possible second to point it at the ear and take the shot while on the run. That bear went down.

    A very close personal friend in Point Lay Alaska, My electrical apprentice, Charles Stalker Jr. III was not so lucky. A polar bear was going after his pregnent girl friend. Charles distracted that bear away from her, and armed with only a knife, and a very thin jacket, that bear literallly cut him in half with the swing from the left paw. The villagers came out and blasted that very skinny bear, but much of Charles had already been eaten. Dec. 1990 sob!

    1950's Allan Rock was out on the ocean ice. Same predicament.. A polar bear was charging him, armed with only a large knife, Allan was successful and jumping on that bears back and taking him down the hard way.!!!!!

    During the 1970's it was LEGAL for the white man to hunt the polar bear in Alaska.
    A permit had to be obtained and it was good for only one day. The cost of the permit was 10,000 dollars, This practice had to be discontinued because too many of the great white hunters were shooting polar bears from the planes they chartered.

    Polar beat meat is the most delicious meat I have ever tasted in my life.
    It is jet black, grainy like old gnarled wood, but it is so sweet and tender, 10 times better than the best prime rib I have ever tasted. In fact it was the ONLY time I had ever asked for seconds at a meal, and all at once everyone responded NO!

    Scientists are puzzled at all the recent drownings of polar bears. They say it is because of the huge distances between ice packs, that the bear cannot swim that far. That is not the real reason for bears drowning, no.
    The real reason for their drownings is they have no fear, they will attack a sleeping walrus on the ocean ice. A walrus will sleep on its back with head back revealing the vital neck region. when that bear pounces on that walrus, the walrus merely lowers its tusks around the bears head and rolls over into the water bringing the bear down to huge depths !

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    Polar Bears were recently put on the endangered species list and then quickly taken off that list. We are only allowed to take them down as a last resort to protect innocent lives here in the village. Each year a few bears will enter the village. Bears stay on the ocean ice pack, sometimes they wander into town.
    We do our very best to get them out of town, back onto the ocean ice. Sometimes
    that is not possible and we have to take them down quick, due to the fact there are children outside in the village. This year three bears entered town, two of those bears had to be taken down quickly, as they were trying to gain access into homes.. A mother with three cubs entered town.. We were successfull in getting that mother and those cubs, out of town back onto the ocean ice.

    The bear and the meat is the responsibility of the hunter, the skin is worked on by the women. It takes many women to perform a "Native Tan" on the skin using very sharp Ulu knives. This can take as much as ten hours or more.

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    These women work hard to scrape that skin clean, this is not an easy task to accomplish. Sally Killigvuk, the mother of the hunter with the polar bear. Elizabeth Oviok (postmaster) work hard with these other women. Six - Eight women will spend the entire day, working on this skin, when that skin is cleaned, then it is put into the ocean, tied up to soak for a week or two, then it is placed up on a rack in the strong north winds to dry, for many months.

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    Well we live a simple life in a very dangerous place, under the harshest conditions known to man on the entire face of the earth. We would not have it any other way.
    Believe it or not, YOU are all invited to take part in whaling festival next June in Point Hope !! A three day non-stop event held every year (coming soon).
    J.J. Russell Lane, displays the skin of his very first polar bear.
    J.J. caught two whales this year! His first, and His second.

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    Khristopher Nashookpuk caught these two bears, in fact his girlfriend took down the big one.!!
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    Well I truely hope that you found this all "bear-y" interesting !
     
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