As a mineral industry continues to grow in Alaska the natives and graduate apprentices can earn high wages as teamsters, hauling supplies and furnishing fresh reindeer meat to mining camps in the interior, at points remote from railway and steamboat transportation. Well trained sled deer have been used to carry the mail 650 miles from Point Barrow, south to Kotzebue. This is the most Northern mail route in the United States, and likewise the most perilous and desolate mail trip in the world. Two trips are made a year and $750 is paid for each journey. The average speed is about 40 to 50 miles per day, keeping up a steady ti ot.
One of the latest and quite remarkable feats showing the capacity of the reindeer for sledge driving was that accomplished by Mr. W. T. Lopp, the Superintendent of the Government Reindeer Service. During the recent winter's tour of inspection, Mr. Lopp travelled more than 2,500 miles with a reindeer sled over the frozen tundra and ice-bound rivers of the lower Bering Sea region from the middle Yukon to the coast of the North Pacific. Part of this route for several hundred miles lay through a country which had been so little traversed that not even native trails had been made. The Alaska Reindeer Service is under the direction of the United States Bureau of Education.