Making of the tanning boards

These are what I started off with before the Arctic Ground Squirrels arrived from a young man from my mother’s childhood home, Kwethluk. What a blessing to have such a young man with family to continue the tradition of hunting and trapping ground squirrels – nothing is wasted from all the catches. Quyana tailuci!

Author: Nasek'taq

Merna Wharton “Nasek’taq” is Yup'ik from Akiacuaq (Akiachak) lives in Anchorage Alaska. Merna is an Alaska Native artist, poet, traditional and contemporary seamstress, carver, gatherer of greens and berries, and loves the outdoors of Alaska! Merna enjoys finding art in natural elements and shares her experiences through her website, Merna crafts to preserve her culture and art and shares her worldview from a remote village Yup’ik girl’s perspective with a glimpse of life in Alaska in her writing and poems. More information about her art can be found at

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