Journey to Deadhorse

    Clouds parting
    Early on in the drive to Deadhorse the clouds began to part and let the sun shine though, drying everything out and making a beautiful, warm day.

    We left camp this morning (Saturday) bright and early at 6am, the clouds were starting to part and we could see the familiar Brooks Range mountains peeking though- an unfamiliar sight over the past few days. We piled 6 of us into a pickup and headed out north on the Dalton.

    We made it to Deadhorse/Prudhoe Bay! The furtherst north you can drive on a highway in North America! It is quite an unusual town, there's not much to see and do as it is mostly centered around the oil industry, not tourists. But there is one qwirky general store for a few souveigneers.

    Here is our time lapse to provide you with an idea of how the rest of the drive up the Dalton looked- when you pair this one with the first one you too can travel the whole length! The weather was much more favorable for this drive and had us taking lots of pictures and enjoying the vistas.

    We also sampled 3 lakes and 5 river sites on the trip back to Toolik. So it was a work trip as well.

    C-OPS sampling
    Katie Harrold and PolarTREC teacher Regina Brinker teaming up with the C-OPS sampler to proflie how the light changes as the water gets deeper.

    Species Journal

    musk ox
    We saw a herd of musk ox not too far off of the highway! They are quite shaggy and unusual creatures. There were even a few babies in the group.

    Today was a BIG day for wildlife!! We saw musk oxen, tons of caribou, a red fox, and many different types of birds including loons, a long tailed jaeger and a snow bunting.

    We spotted several groups of caribou close to the road, you can see this one is tagged with a radio collar for tracking.

    caribou herd
    On our drive back down we saw what had to be thousands of caribou! The herd went on for as far as the eye could see even with binoculars! There were babies as well.

    Harp seal species journal
    Since I already did the species journals for animals I did see (except for musk ox and some of the birds, but no student chose to do those) I will do the harp seal, which lives in the Arctic Ocean, but alas, you can't drive all of the way to the ocean, the oil companies control that access with private roads, so I couldn't see one. Journal by Keriann Deline

    This evening was a team trivia contest. My team consisting of Byron, Sarah, Regina and myself was unstoppable. We had an age range and a diversity of random trivial knowledge which led us to a victory! It was quite a fun night.

    Weather Summary
    Sunny! Partly cloudy, warmer