Alaska Adventure Unlimited loves treating its guests to the things that make Alaska unique. A visit to the only arctic musk ox farm in the US (the world?) certainly fits that bill!
Despite looking like a close relative of the cow, the musk ox is actually much more of a sheep or goat than it is an ox.
The “musk” part of the name comes from the odor emitted by males during the seasonal rut. Eskimos call musk oxen “Oomingmak,” which means “Bearded One.” Despite this, the name musk ox seems to have stuck.
An ancient creature initially from Asia, modern musk oxen were indigenous to Alaska but were hunted to extinction there in the 1850’s. Musk oxen were reintroduced to North America in the early 1930’s when a herd was brought over from Greenland to Nunivak Island.
The primary reason for reintroducing musk ox to arctic Alaska is for their soft underwool, called qiviut. Qiviut is harvested once a year and used by knitters in Eskimo villages to create scarves, hats, and other warm clothing.
The Musk Ox Farm that you’ll visit is a private non-profit farm dedicated to the domestication of the musk ox. The musk ox qiviut helps sustain an Alaskan cottage industry for natives in remote coastal villages. So it’s all for a good cause!
When you visit the Musk Ox Farm, you’ll learn about the project and see some of the traditional qiviut items. You’ll also see one of the oldest living species up close: majestic bulls, gentle cows, and maybe even newborn calves!
Visit An Alaskan Musk Ox Farm
You can visit the Alaskan Musk Ox Farm on our multi-day Alaska vacation package: the 7-Day Denali Fall Colors tour. This unique tour is only offered once a year and includes numerous spectacular fall sights and colors. Plan ahead and book your tour with Alaska Adventure Unlimited today!