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30 June, 2002

We (Tammie and I) arrived in Anchorage on June 20, the longest day of the year. There is approximately 19-20 hours of daylight during this time in Anchorage. This is my second field season in Wales, Alaska. I am here with Dr. Roger Harritt (ENRI, Environment and Natural Resource Institute at the University of Alaska, Anchorage). He has been here since 1996 (minus 1997) excavating at the Kurigitavik Mound. We will once again be researching and studying the importance of Wales (Kingigan) and the subsistence living of the people. We will be excavating to study their history of whaling, their lifestyle, and their growth of the technology of whaling.

We had to fly from Anchorage to Nome first. Nome became famous around 1901 because of the discovery of gold. Roald Amundsen, the famous Norwegian explorer spent time in Nome. Wyatt Earp also spent some time in Nome. The city is located on the coast of the Bering Sea in the Seward Peninsula.

From Nome, we flew on a small 8-seat plane on Bering Air. We flew into Wales, which is located on the Bering Strait. Little Diomede (U.S.) and Big Diomede (Russia) Islands are approximately 30 miles off of the coast. Past the Diomedes are the shores of Siberia.

Another interesting note (I think) is that the International Dateline runs through the Strait. So today is Sunday, we are looking into Monday. We are awaiting our equipment and food, hopefully it will come tomorrow.

Tonight, after supper we were greeted by a Gray Whale and we think its calf a few hundred yards off of the beach. The Gray Whale ranges between 36-50 feet long. They are often seen along the Alaskan shores. This whale is a baleen; it sifts and strains its food through its mouth. Hopefully we will see more of them. They are Awesome!

The rest of the crew is supposed to arrive on Monday. We also begin

Bering Air is ready to take us to Wales. We are the beginning crew, the rest will arrive in the next few days.

Before we left for Wales, we took a trip outside of Anchorage to Ekleutna. This is a Russian Orthodox cemetery.

The famous Wyatt Earp visited Nome in search on gold during the heyday of the Nome gold rush. I guess Nome is the gateway to many adventures.

One more famous "person." This guy greeted us as we strolled about Nome.

Roaul Amundsen, the famous Norwegian explorer visited Nome. Here is his bust in his honor.

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