Sunday, 12 March 2017

Dog sledding in the Arctic and Antarctic

Every spare day I can find, I spend at least an hour sorting out photographs and slides taken over 50 years. Today I am working on the various trips I have done in Antarctica and the Arctic with dogs and sledges. When I reflect, my trips with dogs, they are the most memorable of all my expeditions, and this is due to the relationships that builds up between you and the dogs. Here are a few of my shots.
For more on Scott Base, Antarctica huskies, see this link.

Travelling by plane with 50 huskies from Igaluit (formerly Frobisher Bay) to Eureka (79.9889° N, 85.9408° W) on Ellesmere Island. Then we flew in Twin Otters to Ward Hunt Island, our starting point for the North Pole.

                                   My two strong lead dogs at Scott Base, Rangi (l) and Oscar.

In 1985 we did a 1500 miles dog sled trip from Arctic Red River on the Mackenzie river Canda, to Point Barrow Alaska. A lot of the time was spent travelling on the Arctic Ocean. Paul Schurke (left) puts our gear in the tent while I check the condition of the dogs. (right)

         "Let me sleep another hours.' Odin, a Scott Base husky in 1969. (Antarctica)

The last of the Scott Base huskies, I shipped them from Antarctica to Lyttelton, NZ in 1987, and then to the US via Hawaii, to join Will Steger's kennel in Ely Minnesota. Here they are at Christchurch ready to be flown to the US.

 Following behind Chris Knott with his dog team near Scott base, Antarctica. 1970.

 Training for the North Pole on Baffin Island where we tested dogs, equipment and team members down to minus 45 oC.

                        A master of Antarctic dog sledging, Chris Knott. 1969 at Scott Base. 

                               Setting out on a trip from Scott Base with a team of huskies.

 Lead dogs, Mike and Kulak. Stronger than oxen and set good work ethics for the other dogs. Scott Base 1969-70

                                 Settling in for the night as the sun dips. Arctic Ocean 1986.

Brent Boddy was one of our North Pole team members who lived in Iqaluit, Baffin Island. Here is Brent with his dogs, his house behind and wife and son Nigel. Brent always carried a harpoon with him to test the thickness of the ice. A highly experienced Arctic traveller.

On our trip to point Barrow Alaska, we often skiied out front to coax the dogs along when they got bored. 1985