Quvan Crew's Whale Hunt

Mary Sage, Manager
Arctic Education Foundation
Barrow, Alaska

Photos by Joseph Napaaqtuq Sage

Below are pictures of the Quvan Crew’s whale. The Captain is Herman Ahsoak. Co-captain is Jonas Ahsoak.

The whale gave itself to the crew in the morning of the first day of the fall whaling season. Other successful whaling crews were:

North Slope Borough Crew, led by Mayor Edward Itta
Saggan Crew,
Olemaun Crew; City of Barrow led by Mayor Nate Olemaun

As we say here in Barrow: HEY HEY HEY!!!!!

Quvan Crew flag: When a whaling crew is successful, they will bring their boat next to the whale while butchering and fly their crew’s flag. Here, the Quvan Crew’s flag is proudly flying near the butchering site.


Workers are quick to butcher the bowhead whale harvested by Quvan Crew. During the fall whaling season, the whales are brought to shore and then onto the old runway for butchering. This old runway is located approximately 5 miles from town. This site is selected because the smell of the whale attracts the ever alert polar bear, and the further away from town, the better.

Jonah Ahsoak


Soup: L-R: Butcher Ray Kious, Quvan Crew Captain Herman Ahsoak, Co-Captain Jonas Ahsoak and his wife Heidi Ahsoak enjoy some hot soup while taking a break from butchering Quvan Crew’s whale.


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