Sunday, April 25, 2010


Here are some pictures of the North Alaska retrieval kayak that our friend Mark Kuhlman is building for Jeremy. It is based on a traditional qayak design from our area, built to allow a hunter to navigate small sloughs or leads between ocean ice sheets to retrieve geese or seals. Mark is building this one in his home shop outside Florence, Montana. It is a skin-on-frame design. The frame is formed with a multitude of mortise joints held together by wraps of lashing.

Some of the curved pieces are carved to form, others are steam-bent into the proper curve. The frame is then stitched inside a covering which envelopes but is not fastened to it. It makes for a beautiful, light, supple boat.

Sadly, no one here in our area of the Norton Sound is still building traditional boats and old boats are exceedingly, vanishingly, rare. Now there's one more in the world.

1 comment:

Jake said...

ok, that is cool!