Week 13 To the Arctic Ocean

Date: 5.15.2011
Location: 70º12'N 148º30'W Deadhorse, Alaska, USA
Weather Conditions: Cloudy, 25ºF (-3ºC)
The haul road is a roller coaster for sure - the dog boxes actually moved on the back-end of the truck from the bumps, ups and downs!! What is the haul road? It is the road, some paved, some dirt, that snakes its way from Fairbanks in the interior of Alaska through some of North Americas grandest wilderness to the place called Dead Horse on the coast of the Arctic Ocean. This is the place that supports the Prudhoe Bay oilfield. Prudhoe itself is closed to civilians like us, but we can still see the oil rigs, pumps, flames and an astonishing amount of equipment and trucks that it takes to run this place. Workers come here from around the
world to work three weeks on, three weeks off. Prudhoe Bay and the oilfields along the coast here on the Northslope produce an enormous amount of oil used by the rest of us. When we drove up the haul road we drove the length of the pipeline that transports the oil south. It zig zags above ground, across the tundra, rivers and mountain, sometimes going underground to then soon to appear again. No doubt this is one amazing feat of engineering! We will likely have to cross the pipeline on our path with the dogsleds as well.

In a few hours we will be hitching the Polar Huskies to set out for the community of Kaktovik, the most eastern community in Alaska. We will be running at night now, to make the most of the cooler conditions then. It is another race, this time we are running from Spring break-up!

See the week in images and read the story of what took place on the trail >>

Watch the movies from the expedition trail >>