Level B Unit 1/2

Brave Dogs of Alaska

by Nathan Bowen, age 13

In the remote little town of Nome, Alaska, a tremendous part of the town’s population was suffering from a deadly throat disease due to the lack of proper medicine. The town board concluded that sled dog relay teams were the only possible route to get the badly needed medicine through the many miles of snowy sub-zero terrain. It was a harrowing trek through the wild, dangerous, and ice-bound land of Alaska. But a bone-chilling blizzard encompassed the teams, threatening to take away their sense of direction in the unforgiving land of Alaska. The musher of the last team, in a desperate attempt to save himself and his dogs from impending doom, clothed the canines in animal skins to protect them from the piercing winds. It did not work. The wind went straight through the animal skins, almost freezing them where they stood. The dogs’ health deteriorated due to the ice-laden air that they were breathing, injuring their lungs. Eventually, after a long, tedious journey, the unvanquished team staggered into town, delivering the medicine intact. The weary dogs were hailed as heroes for saving countless lives. In today’s society the medicine would have been delivered in a few hours by a skilled bush pilot.