It took a couple days to prepare my smoking area and after the first go at everything I need to improve a few thing. My twisitng stick needs to be more secure and my drying pole is on uneven ground and a bit high. There is so much to know and look for when setting up a tanning area so thankful my parents are happy to have my set up in their yard. My parent have been so supportive and encouraging mahsi I love you so much. I soaked my hide over night friday in the brain water, saturday morning I punched the hide with my bone tool scraped and stretch with my The Teh then twisted and stretched it. It became late so I folded my hide up for the night to work on Sunday.
My hide all twisted up on Saturday night.
This hide is the one my dad and brother Tumbah harvested last fall and the one I worked on in Trout with maggie. At frist I thought it was almost ready for it’s final smoking….
Sunday scraping and drying my Moosehide.
But on Sunday when it was drying out a couple of hard areas came up I will tube smoke this one once more and do another round of soaking and punching.
I have some e-denitu(rotten wood) for smoking my hide but it’s not enough so Monday the boys and I went for a drive ont he highway with my Dad. We snacked on wild strawberries, raspberries and found a good amount of e-denitu I’m hoping it’s the good stuff according to Oz my 4 year old it’s the best stuff in the woods. We also picked some roots. It was a good day.
I have to head over to yellowknife to shoot for the documentry project and hit up Folk on the Rocks I’m bringing a moosehide with me in case I get a chance to do some work on it. It’s a hide that was started out at the Dechinta Bush University a couple of summer ago in the Sahtu Dene Style.
Tanning area. So far I been doing what I know and learning from my mentors in their space, their work areas. I need to set up my space to finish my moosehides, easier said then done. I need a twisting post and stick, a cleaned pole to dry my hide and a moosehide smoking area(with a tarped tri-pod covering) or a beautiful canvas teepee… *sigh. Someday my Dene girl dreams will come true.
Twisting post and a twisting stick. I took a drive with my mom, my niece Dahtlea and my two boys to look for a tree with a strong fork in it. Hmmm a tree with a strong fork…. I’m thinking birch. We found a very green beautiful birch with a strong fork and i chopped it down. Well what I found out later and what I was thinking at the time was that the post needs to be dry. I hope my very green birch will work all right. The sap isn`t super sticky and it looks so nice and took me FOREVER to widdle down and it`s strong. I still have a little work to do on my twisting stick.
Twisting post & Stick with drying pole up and ready to go.
My niece Dahtlea came over to help and watch me make the moose brain water for my hide to soak in over night. She stayed and helped dig out the fire pit for smoking the hides.
Stirring my moose brains.
Mixing the brains in the water, the fermented brain is put in a cotton cloth and worked into the water.
Soaking my Moosehide in the brain water for the night.
I wanted to keep my tanning area kind of all in the same area so I choose to dig out a hole near my other stations. I used cement cinder block thingies for the pit. I may put some gravel on the bottom of my fire pit tomorrow. TOMORROW, I need to find a young birch with lots of branches to loop my hide on while I punch and stretch it after it`s overnight soaking. I also need to find willows to surround my fire pit.
Fire pit for hide smoking with stretching frame, twisting post and drying pole in the back.