Friday, May 23, 2008

Another Successful Hunt

Grace and greetings.
To the left you can see a whaling boat (Umiak) and its supporting craft. In the background is another whaling boat. The Umiaks are no bigger than a canoe, and yet this is what the whalers go out into the Arctic Ocean to catch the Bowhead whales. Once a crew has caught a whale, they bring their Umiak in and hoist up their flag. Each crew has their own flag color and design, usually made by the crew captain.
So far, I believe there have been ten to twelve whales caught. I understand that a couple of whales got away after a harpoon was shot. There can only be 22 strikes or harpoon shots, so they are down to their last five or so shots.
According to what I hear, the whalers have been out in the water the last several days, as they have been beautiful and sunny days. But the only whales they are seeing are the very pregnant ones, and they let them go by. Every once in a while somebody will get a pregnant whale, but that is not their intention.
It is another wonderful Friday "evening", blue skies, and the sun is shining brightly. I took this picture about 6:30 PM (Alaska Daylight Time). You can see that the sun is still very bright, and will continue to be so until the clouds come back in.
Peace and blessings.

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