Thursday, May 22, 2014

Muskox Fleshing Contest

One of the final events for the Omingmak Frolics this year was the Muskox Fleshing Contest.  Yup. A competition for cleaning muskox hides, sponsored by the Ekaluktutiak Hunters and Trappers Organization. So northern, right? Obviously I had to check it out.

The muskox hides, ready for battle

close up of muskox hide

everyone getting ready in their protective plastic yellow aprons

on your marks...get set...go!

The contest was held out on the ice of the frozen Arctic Ocean, near the snowmobile races.

Cleaning the muskox hide basically involves using a knife (often a traditional ulu) to scrape the fat and meat from the skin. It's a long process, especially for a big animal like a muskox.

People were judged according to how fast they could work and how clean they could get their hide. Prizes included gallons of you can take your snowmobiles out and hunt more muskox!

got some blood on your seal mitts

scrape, scrape, scrape

Check out the progress of this contestant:

obligatory selfie