Questions & Answers Wk 03

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Every week Team GoNorth! answers ten questions related to the module topic from student explorers -- so stay tuned and submit YOUR questions!

Having healthy teeth is one of the most important things to us as far as our health when we are on the expedition trail.

We have to eat a lot of calories every day to have enough energy for the days work, and for our bodies to produce body heat during the day and at night. If we have problems with our teeth, well one tends to become more hesitant about eating.. especially things such as frozen butter sticks, frozen chunks of cheese and frozen, well frozen almost everything!

So, we brush our teeth morning and night, while inside of the tent. We swish and then we spit out in the vestibule opposite of our main entrance (there is a vestibule on both ends of the tent).

When it is really cold the toothpaste will freeze, but we have learned over the years that some brands stay soft longer than others!

With all that food and sleeping in a tent, where do you brush your teeth?

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That's great! And what a fun way to do your collection~

You can adopt a Polar Husky at any time.

By making a $60 donation to the University of Minnesota, your name (or that of your class) is added to a list of proud sponsors and you will receive an official Polar Husky adoption certificate for your Polar Husky in the mail.

Your adoption helps to support this free GoNorth! education program and the Polar Huskies on their journey!

Learn more about how to Adopt-A-Polar-Husky in the Dog Yard.

Our class wants to adopt a polar husky and get a certifcte for our room. We are going to do a daily coin drive and all bring in our spare change every day. Do we have to do it before you leave for Greenland?

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We need to fix it!

We only have the gear that we have with us - but we have a large spare bags with sewing kits, tools and so on, so that we can fix whatever breaks. Sometimes we have to come up with some pretty different solutions to 'fix things' but it very important we always make repairs as soon as possible and not postpone it, because we can never know when we will really need what broke!

It seems you need to spend a lot of time getting gear stuff ready before you even leave? What happens if something breaks when you are in Greenland?

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Joe & Stevie

We use Polar Huskies because it is the best way of transportation for what we set out to do. When you are on a dog team you do not need trails, you do not need gas and they never 'break down'! As long as it is safe, you can travel anywhere you want to.

We need to travel on the land to observe, explore and do field research. Traveling slowly on the land with the Polar Huskies visiting communities along the way lets us do just that!
One thing most people probably don't think that much about is that Polar Huskies have senses. That is very helpful and makes for safer travel. For example, when you are traveling by dog team - if you have a team of ten dogs, you have ten pairs or eyes and ears besides your own to explore the land. And nothing is safer than traveling down the ice on a river than if you have a good lead dog out front. They can hear the ice, and they can feel it through their paws - so they know if the ice is good travel and will let us know if they are uncomfortable so we can start checking to make sure it is safe travels. Or imagine a polar bear comes into camp while we are sleeping. Surrounded by the Polar Huskies though, no polar bear sneaks into camp - if someone senses a bear (they are good at that) they barks like crazy in a very certain way to let us know what is going on.

We LOVE THE POLAR HUSKIES! :) But we are wondering why do you use dogs instead of snowmobiles when you travel?

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All the Polar Huskies, with the only exception being Timber, have been born in our Kennel.

Have you been to the Kennel to meet the Polar Huskies?

Be sure to take a tour of Polar Husky World too and let Lightning teach you everything there is to know about what it means to be a Polar husky!

Where did you get your dogs? Also are the dogs rescues or are they pure breads?

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Excellent question. That is an important part of the logistical planning.

If a Team Member, two or four-legged, gets hurt or ill during the expedition, we are trained to deal with whatever is possible in the field. We have an extensive first aid kits - one for the Polar Huskies and one for the humans.

We also have both a veterinarian and a doctor on call while the expedition is going. So that as long as we can get connection with our satellite phone, we can call with any questions 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

If either us or the dogs are hurt or sick, we will most likely take a rest day if possible. Otherwise, we may tie either down on the sled. Yes, that is indeed scary but sometimes necessary. Safety is of the utmost importance so if necessary, we will call for a rescue to transport the Team Member or Polar Husky out for care.

What happens if somebody gets sick on the trail?

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While out on the expedition trail, the polar huskies will be eating between 5-6000 calories a day just like us two-legged team members.

Did you hear the Audio Update this week about getting fat for the dogs?

Did you see the Expedition Movie this week of Brant and Charlie packing the dog food that we'll be taking with us to Greenland?

And lastly, how about the video with Trigger enjoying a delicious treat?

How much dog food do the dogs eat a day?

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Our first stop once we head up onto the Ice Cap will be the NEEM drilling station. What they do here is drill into the ice cap, attempting to get to the bed rock ("land underneath the ice sheet") in order to drill out cores that are as deep as at all possible! This is one of the ways that it is known just how thick the ice sheet is. At its thickest it is 2 miles (~ 3 km) thick!

How do you know how thick the snow that you will be sledding will be?

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We have been very fortunate during our travels to be welcomed with open-arms into communities. From staying with people in their homes, to talking to students in schools, to attending community events (some in our honor). This provides us with an opportunity to communicate with many people, observe lifestyles and traditions, AND share all of it with you right here in the weekly Trail Reports and Scrapbook media! You'll be able to see, read, and hear all about it once we are in Greenland!

If you want to learn about some of our past experiences in communities right now, check out some Trail Reports from previous programs! 

GoNorth! ANWR 2006

GoNorth! Chukotka 2007

GoNorth! Fennoscandia 2008

GoNorth! Nunavut 2009

Have you ever communicated with the Inuits and joined in on some of there customs?

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Located in central-Minnesota, we experience the change of seasons like a lot of States here in the US. With each passing year, it seems the window of time where we have snow covering the ground is less and less. We have been losing snow cover rapidly over the past few weeks, and just a few days ago the ground thawed enough to start absorbing lots of water.

Our paws are crossed that we will have lots of ice and snow
when we get to Greenland! ;)

Isn't it a bad thing that the dog can dig up dirt, because isn't it suppose to be all ice/snow up there?

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