Before heading on, time for some data and graphics.
Flight from Inuvik to Herschel Island: 283.8 km
Snowmobile Herschel - Island tour plus drive to ice camp: 110,5 km
Sledding Camp1 - Camp 2, April, 20th: 32.9 km
Sledding Camp2 - Camp 3, April, 21st: 26.0 km
Sledding Camp3 - Camp 4, April, 23rd: 33.7 km
Sledding Camp4 - Camp 5, April, 24th: 35.9 km
Sledding Camp5 - Camp 6, April, 25th: 46.6 km
Sledding Camp6 - Aklavik, April, 26th: 16.0 km
Total distance dogsledding: 191.1 km
(Approx. 119 miles)
Drive from Aklavik to Inuvik Airport: 126.7 km
(Ice road: 116.5 km Street: 10.2 km)
|Route travelled||Route travelled over satellite image||Route travelled over greyscale satellite image|
And here are the 'engines' used for the dogsledding, the thirty dogs that were on the tour:
For a lot of them, it was like a family vacation. There was a 'family tree' back in Whitehorse (which I, unfortunately didn't write down) and as far as I recall, ten of the dogs were Ali's kids, namely the litter named after Lord of the Rings characters (Frodo, Sam, Legolas, Arwen and Gimli) and the Australian litter (Tim Tam, Kanga, Roo and Tassie). (To spare you the search at Wikipedia, if you're not from Down Under: Tim Tam is a type of chocolate biscuit.)
It's quite interesting how different the dogs within a single litter can look. While Arwen sort of looks like Ali, dogs like Sam and Gimli look almost nothing like each other. This probably has a lot to do with the fact that sled dogs are bred for personality traits and performance and not for looks. So they're not predisposed to a specific look. (It's probably more similar to a litter of house cats, which often has quite different looking cats, since they are usually not selectively bred, but tend to make their own arrangements.) There's also quite a variety of sizes. Ali is literally dwarfed by Gimli.
I stayed for another day at the homestead in Whitehorse, so I got a chance to spend some more time with the dogs that hadn't been on the Herschel trip.
(The homestead isn't really in Whitehorse, but some distance away in the woods, in a nice setting.)
Among the dogs were such 'characters' as Bubba, who was seemingly competing for the title of 'Most relaxed dog'.
While this dog seemed to be working on a career as Chow Yun-Fat impersonator.
But at least the young dogs in their puppy pen were fairly energetic. (And the advice "don't go in there with just a t-shirt" should be followed - violators will get scratches from over-eager dogs!)
There was also the opportunity to go walking with Denali and Hobbs (Hobbes(?)) to a nearby hill. (Hobbs is the one that looks scary on photographs - a very nice dog, though.)
But there came the time where I had to leave, but as a last thing, I tried to take a picture with the dog whose haircut most resembled mine.
That didn't work out quite as planned, since that dog was clearly more interested in my hairstyle and in licking my nose than in looking into the camera. But it was fun and worth a try...
But that wasn't quite the end of the vacation. On the way home I stopped in Vancouver.
On to part 5 - Vancouver