Visiting the Arctic Circle was always a dream of mine, however, I didn't think I'd ever make 320 miles North of the Arctic Circle to the most Northern part of North America; Barrow, Alaska. Being only 21 square miles and just 1,300 miles from the North Pole, Barrow is home to over 4,000 residents. Native Inupiat's have been living in the Northern Part of Alaska since circa 1000 B.C.
Maggie, Nate, and I were very fortunate to have such an amazing host in Barrow. Sarah stayed at our hostel for a few nights back in May, before heading back to Barrow for her second summer studying anthropology. Luckily, she had some free time to show us around town and even had a few extra beds to crash on at her hut.
Our first stop, the Arctic Ocean! While living along the coast of New Jersey, I've always admired the beauties of the ocean, however, seeing the Arctic Ocean nothing I've witnessed before. Looking straight ahead into one of most deadliest oceans, where the sky and water meet.
Rock collecting has been a recent, and yet addicting, hobby of mine. Here, Sara is showing us what the children call "wish rocks" in the Arctic. They are all black rocks with one strip going around it. Unfortunately, I searched hours for one and came up short.
After a quick tour of the very small town, Barrow, Sarah's friend Charlene treated us to an amazing native lunch. Here she is preparing to cut us up some moktuk- which is bowhead whale skin and blubber.
Lunch is served! In the 12:00 position, here we have beluga meat, then bowhead intestines next on the right, bowhead meat down below, and muktuk in tiny strips on the left. With a little salt thrown on top, everything was phenomenal. Muktuk was not as chewy as I imangined, and it was indeed my favorite. All whale meats had a heavy saltwater taste, but it wasn't unbearable. Not photographed is seal jerky which was also terrific.
With a little duck soup on the side - bon appétit!
After a quick lunch at Charlene's, the weather decided to brighten up a bit, so we headed to beach. The sun doesn't set in the summer, yet with temperatures in the 60's, yup jackets were required at this beach.
A native man waves to his neighbor as heads into town. ATV's are most popular due to their 4-wheel drive and great gas milage.