Tuesday, 24 June 2014

Nenana to Nome

Nenana to Nome

Eighty nine years ago, the town of Nome in Alaska was struck with a terrible bacterial disease called Diphtheria. Sled dogs teams had to relay medicine from Nenana to Nome.  

In Nome the winter lasts for seven months. Nome, Alaska is on the other side of the world to New Zealand so summer in Nome  is winter in New Zealand. In early November the Bering sea (which is off the coast of Nome) will be frozen over. The average high temperature for summer in Nome is seven degrees and average low temperature is three degrees. "That's really cold."

In Nome the terrible disease diphtheria struck the people of Nome in 1925. The town had run out of medicine and without the medicine the people would die. So the town relayed the medicine from Neana to Nome using teams of sled dogs to save the people. Port Safety was the last leg of the race and one of the harder legs to race.

A sled dog team is made up of a lead dog or dogs, swing dogs, team dogs and wheel dogs.  Every dog would want to be a lead dog. One famous lead dog is called Balto. He lead the last leg of the race from Port Safety to Nome. Balto's master was named Gunnar Kaasen. He had the job to tell the dogs what to do.

Balto is a hero. He is a Siberian Husky who was born in Nome 1919 and died on March the 14th 1933. When Balto died he was not buried. Unlike most dogs, Balto was stuffed and put on display in  the Cleveland Museum of Natural History in America.When Balto died he was fourteen. That's ninety eight in dogs years. "That's really old" Balto is named after the explorer Samuel Balto or his full name Samuel Johannesen Balto.

 I suppose you're wondering what diphtheria is. Well diphtheria is a highly contagious bacterial disease that effects swallowing and breathing. Diphtheria mostly hit in the 1900s to about the 1950s. Not very many people get diphtheria in our day because most people are vaccinated against it. The name diphtheria comes from the Greek language. If you get diphtheria, the doctors will know because you will have gray slime down the back of your throat.

The story of Balto became very famous and in 1995 it was released as a movie. In the movie Balto is half wolf half dog and no one liked him. There was a dog named Steel and he was the lead dog and everyone thought he was amazing and him and his friends were very mean to Balto. The movie is a very good cartoon movie. In the movie Balto falls in love with a dog called Jenna. Jenna's owner Rosie got sick with diphtheria and Balto is determined to save Rosie from dying.

I hope you have learnt something about the Neana to Nome sled dog race to save the people of Nome or about where the movie Balto originated from. I hope you enjoyed my report on the Neana to Nome sled dog race. The last great race on Earth to save the people of Nome, Alaska.

By Maddison :)

Sunday, 8 June 2014


On Saturday my netball team "the gold" played really really well.  We were so determined and deserved a better score. The score was 7 to 20 to Kurow.