Seward, Alaska

The Alaskan Dog Mushing Summer


delivered to ice
Dog Mushing camp at the foot of the Godwin Glacier, Seward.
Stars & Stripes
US flag floats on Godwin's Dog Mushing camp.
canine craving
Dog mushing dogs howl, eager to run.
fresh customers
Helicopter about to land at Godwin's camp, with customers
On hold
Dog team lined up for another walk around the camp.
Icefield Expedition
A detail from one of the tents at Godwin's Dog Mushing camp.
husky howl
Dog howls longing to be able to go on another journey.
Vocation Selection
Keepers pair dogs at Godwin's dog mushing camp.
Summer Dog Mushing
Dogs tow a sled through the snow of the Godwin Mountains.
Zig and Zag
Dog mushing in zigzag, next to the camp of Godwin, Seward.
On my way
Groomer is towed by a newly formed team of dogs.
Traffic signal
A decorative sign from Godwin's dog mushing camp.
outdoor kennel
Pack of dogs from Godwin's Dog Mushing Camp, near Seward-
Affect of Handler
Greg Stoddard pets one of the dogs he's assigned to care for.
a tight curve
Groomer leads a team of pulling dogs he has just formed.
It's almost 30 degrees and the glaciers are melting. In Alaska, entrepreneurs have little time to get rich. Until the end of August, dog mushing cannot stop.

Judging by the sound alone, one might be led to think that Juneau was at war. Seaplanes take off one after the other, gliding along the Gastineau Canal.

And dozens of helicopters fly over it and its surroundings on lightning missions.

Originally, the cause of this turmoil are the gigantic cruise ships that dock every day at the city's docks, leaving it in the shade, as the sun goes down behind.

The Alaskan Strangeness of the Juneau Capital

A veritable army of visitors disembarks from each of the ships and goes to the first souvenir shops they find.

Like most towns in the state, Juneau is tiny. It catches the typical Lower 48 Yankee off guard, accustomed to endless spaces and imposing metropolises.

Inspired by the sheerest ignorance, they offend the locals over and over again, asking them, in the middle of downtown Alaska, “where is juneau after all?” or the way to get there.

When elucidated, they get fed up with their minimal urbanism in a couple of hours and seek to make up for the disappointment with unforgettable achievements in the last US border

They are the preferred customers of scenic flight companies. Tourists with a mania for grandeur, wallets to match or just a willingness to spend.

Helicopter, Godwin, Seward, Alaska

Helicopter about to land at Godwin's camp, with customers

Panoramic Flights. One of Alaska's Summer Mines

On a sunny day, its offices and hangars never rest. Reservations are made and more reservations are made, weighing after weighing and giving briefings after briefings from the early morning hours until late sunset.

Helicopter pilots, these, repeat the same routes, locutions and jokes until exhaustion, satisfied with the accelerated enrichment but still eager for the end of the season. Not as much as their sacrificed mountain partners.

Until some time ago, scenic flights were limited to discovering the best scenery in Alaska. But American marketing creativity knows no bounds.

From the mid-XNUMXs onwards, scenic flight companies made landings on glaciers and the ice fields that feed them a commonplace.

The Profitable Relationship between Panoramic Flights and Dog Mushing

And, shortly thereafter, they joined the main dog breeders and mushers from the Great North and enriched their adventures with baptisms "to be shipped" by Dog Mushing, in those same extreme places.

Over the years, this has become one of the most profitable packages whether or not it cost each hour and a half tour over 500 dollars.

But if the life of investors in the business is limited to managing and collecting profits, some of the participants lower in the hierarchy suffer very well to guarantee their dividends.

Dog mushing camp, Godwin, Seward, Alaska

Dog Mushing camp at the foot of the Godwin Glacier, Seward.

We took off from the surroundings of Juneau, for a second “mode” experience.

As the helicopter climbs, we leave the floodplain of the Mendenhall Peninsula. We ascend to the heights of Thunder Mountain.

Against the wind, the pilot conquers a final slope and reveals Lake Mendenhall and a wide valley painted blue by the homonymous glacier.

 

To the Mendenhall Dog Mushing Camp Meeting

We then continue along the 19 km of the ice river to the high white expanse where it rises.

There, we catch a glimpse of an enormous white camp half-camouflaged over the snow, where hundreds of dogs are barking, excited by the sudden appearance of the aircraft.

We are welcomed by Ted Williams, the person in charge of the field that leads us to his malamutes and huskies favorites while talking about the romantic but arduous life of the team.

Ted describes the long periods of mountain retreat. He and the other members usually go down to Juneau only once a week.

Tent Detail, Dog Mushing Camp, Godwin, Seward, Alaska

A detail from one of the tents at Godwin's Dog Mushing camp.

And, in between those days, they put up with a little bit of everything, excited only by the money they make and by socializing with their colleagues and with the dogs they train and treat.

When the storms settle in, the helicopters stop showing up and the isolation can last for weeks.

Dog mushing-camp dog mushing dogs, Godwin, Seward, Alaska

Dog mushing dogs howl, eager to run.

The Hard Subsistence of Many Affectionate Mushers

most of these mushers they are passionate about the sport and compete with their best dogs in major competitions, including the world-famous Iditarod Trail and Yukon Quest.

Dog mushing, dog mushing camp, Godwin, Seward, Alaska

Dog mushing in zigzag, next to the camp of Godwin, Seward.

A few days before we get to Juneau, we met Greg Stoddard about the Godwin Ice Field, situated near Seward, in the highlands of the Kenai Peninsula.

Dog mushing handler, Godwin, Seward, Alaska

Greg Stoddard pets one of the dogs he's assigned to care for.

Despite the deafening barks and howls, Greg explains us how the camp works but quickly cuts the way for clarifications and stories of the real mushing. 

He confesses, without ceremonies, that the association with panoramic flight companies and the months spent on the mountain allow them to dedicate themselves full-time to training and competition, avoiding old financial constraints, the same as many of their colleagues mushers continue to suffer.

After a few minutes, he resumes interrupting the conversation to meet the new wave of tourists who have just left the helicopter.

Dog mushing-camp dog mushing dogs, Godwin, Seward, Alaska

Dog mushing dogs howl in anticipation of being able to run across the Mendenhall Ice Field

Take another short tour of the camp.

He brings together a team of eager dogs and, after transmitting the passengers the basic instructions for driving the sleds, a colleague makes the canine team slide over a closed trail already well excavated in the snow, encouraged by two leaders Siberian Huskies conflicting.

Keepers and Dogs, Dog Mushing Camp, Godwin, Seward, Alaska

Keepers pair dogs at Godwin's dog mushing camp.

Taking advantage of a short break from the tour, a fifty-year-old “passenger” in a flowing dress with flowers and a straw hat asked to change from the sled to the post. musher and, in three strokes, utterly confuses the dogs with his incoherent commands.

Until the end of the journey, the dignity of the mushing little improves.

Dog mushing in Godwin, Seward, Alaska

Groomer leads a team of pulling dogs he has just formed.

None of the Eskimo peoples of the Greater Arctic North ever thought that their age-old form of locomotion could be so infamously desecrated.

As long as cruises dock in Alaska and southern tourists disembark willing to spend, this odd Summer Dog Mushing will have to go on.

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A Slightly Lonesome Wolf

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Here begins Alaska

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Journey to the End of the Alaskan Road

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The Chant and the Ice

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glaciers

icy blue planet

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Sitka: Journey through a once Russian Alaska

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Journey through a Glacial Alaska

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The Little Capital of Greater Alaska

From June to August, Juneau disappears behind cruise ships that dock at its dockside. Even so, it is in this small capital that the fate of the 49th American state is decided.
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Talkeetna's Alaska-Style Life

Once a mere mining outpost, Talkeetna rejuvenated in 1950 to serve Mt. McKinley climbers. The town is by far the most alternative and most captivating town between Anchorage and Fairbanks.
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Endless Snow on the Island of Fire

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In the Footsteps of the Grizzly Man

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Valdez, Alaska

On the Black Gold Route

In 1989, the Exxon Valdez oil tanker caused a massive environmental disaster. The vessel stopped plying the seas, but the victim city that gave it its name continues on the path of crude oil from the Arctic Ocean.
Skagway, Alaska

A Klondike's Gold Fever Variant

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Seward, Alaska

The Longest 4th of July

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Homer a Whittier, Alaska

In Search of the Stealth Whittier

We leave Homer in search of Whittier, a refuge built in World War II and housing two hundred or so people, almost all in a single building.
Mendenhall Glacier, Juneau, Alaska

The Glacier Behind Juneau

The Tlingit natives named this one of more than 140 glaciers on the Juneau Icefield. Best known for Mendenhall, over the past three centuries, global warming has seen its distance to Alaska's diminutive capital increase by more than four kilometers.
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safari
Okavango Delta, Botswana

Not all rivers reach the sea

Third longest river in southern Africa, the Okavango rises in the Angolan Bié plateau and runs 1600km to the southeast. It gets lost in the Kalahari Desert where it irrigates a dazzling wetland teeming with wildlife.
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Annapurna (circuit)
Annapurna Circuit 14th - Muktinath to Kagbeni, Nepal

On the Other Side of the Pass

After the demanding crossing of Thorong La, we recover in the cozy village of Muktinath. The next morning we proceed back to lower altitudes. On the way to the ancient kingdom of Upper Mustang and the village of Kagbeni that serves as its gateway.
The Little-Big Senglea II
Architecture & Design
Senglea, Malta

An Overcrowded Malta

At the turn of the 8.000th century, Senglea housed 0.2 inhabitants in 2 km3.000, a European record, today, it has “only” XNUMX neighborhood Christians. It is the smallest, most overcrowded and genuine of the Maltese cities.
Adventure
Boat Trips

For Those Becoming Internet Sick

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Miyajima Island, Shinto and Buddhism, Japan, Gateway to a Holy Island
Ceremonies and Festivities
Miyajima, Japan

Shintoism and Buddhism with the Tide

Visitors to the Tori of Itsukushima admire one of the three most revered scenery in Japan. On the island of Miyajima, Japanese religiosity blends with Nature and is renewed with the flow of the Seto Inland Sea.
San Pedro Atacama Street, Chile
Cities
San Pedro de Atacama, Chile

São Pedro de Atacama: an Adobe Life in the Most Arid of Deserts

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Gastronomy Without Borders or Prejudice

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Pitões das Junias, Montalegre, Portugal
Culture
Montalegre, Portugal

Through Alto do Barroso, Top of Trás-os-Montes

we moved from Terras de Bouro for those of Barroso. Based in Montalegre, we wander around the discovery of Paredes do Rio, Tourém, Pitões das Júnias and its monastery, stunning villages on the border of Portugal. If it is true that Barroso has had more inhabitants, visitors should not miss it.
Sport
Competitions

Man: an Ever Tested Species

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Namibe, Angola, Cave, Iona Park
Traveling
Namibe, Angola

Incursion to the Angolan Namibe

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Efate, Vanuatu, transshipment to "Congoola/Lady of the Seas"
Ethnic
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The Island that Survived “Survivor”

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Portfolio, Got2Globe, Best Images, Photography, Images, Cleopatra, Dioscorides, Delos, Greece
Got2Globe Photo Portfolio
Got2Globe Portfolio

The Earthly and the Celestial

Dead Sea, Surface of Water, Lower Land, Israel, rest
History
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Afloat, in the Depths of the Earth

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Christmas in the Caribbean, nativity scene in Bridgetown
Islands
Bridgetown, Barbados e Grenada

A Caribbean Christmas

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Winter White
Iceland

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Couple visiting Mikhaylovskoe, village where writer Alexander Pushkin had a home
Literature
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Nature
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Stuart Road, on its way to Australia's Top End

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Sheki, Autumn in the Caucasus, Azerbaijan, Autumn Homes
Autumn
Sheki, Azerbaijan

autumn in the caucasus

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Joshua Tree National Park, California, United States,
Natural Parks
PN Joshua Tree, California, United States

The Arms stretched out to Heaven of the PN Joshua Tree

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Transpantaneira pantanal of Mato Grosso, capybara
UNESCO World Heritage
Mato Grosso Pantanal, Brazil

Transpantaneira, Pantanal and the Ends of Mato Grosso

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Zorro's mask on display at a dinner at the Pousada Hacienda del Hidalgo, El Fuerte, Sinaloa, Mexico
Characters
El Fuerte, Sinaloa, Mexico

Zorro's Cradle

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Martinique island, French Antilles, Caribbean Monument Cap 110
Beaches
Martinique, French Antilles

The Armpit Baguette Caribbean

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Boat on the Yellow River, Gansu, China
Religion
Bingling Yes, China

The Canyon of a Thousand Buddhas

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On Rails

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Tongatapu, Tonga

The Last Polynesian Monarchy

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Coin return
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Dawki, India

Dawki, Dawki, Bangladesh on sight

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PN Tortuguero, Costa Rica, public boat
Wildlife
Tortuguero NP, Costa Rica

The Flooded Costa Rica of Tortuguero

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Scenic Flights
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The Fjords of the Antipodes

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