People sometimes ask me which musher in history is my favorite, and it’s a tough choice, as there have been some truly amazing mushers (and I write about many of them in my book Alaskan Sled Dog Tales), but one which is always near the top of my list is Arthur Treadwell Walden, author of “A Dog-Puncher on the Yukon.” Walden is rarely mentioned without reference to his great sled dog Chinook, for the dog helped cement Walden’s reputation and renown as a musher, breeder, and trainer of the highest caliber.
Arthur and his wife Kate bred and raised the magnificent Chinook, born in January, 1917, at Walden’s Wonalancet Farm near Tamworth, New Hampshire. Chinook, for which the breed was named, made headlines around the world with victories in the first international sled dog race in 1922, and the breed was later hailed as the freighting dogs on Admiral Byrd’s 1928-29 expedition to Antarctica. Much has been written about Arthur Walden and his dogs, and several online articles are linked below this photo.
“Adventurer Arthur T. Walden with his sled dog Chinook at the Winter Carnival in Portland, Maine. This photograph was published on the front page of the Portland Evening Express on February 11, 1922, the same year Chinook led Walden’s team to victory in the first Eastern International Dog Derby, on his way to becoming the most famous dog in America.”
Northern Light Media: Biography of Arthur Treadwell Walden
Wikipedia: Arthur Treadwell Walden
New England Historical Society: Arthur Walden and A Dog’s Life of Adventure
Cowhampshire Blog: Walden Biographical details
Seppala Kennels: Arthur T. Walden
The Chinook Owners Association: Arthur Walden history
The Laconia Daily Sun (3-part history): The Most Famous Dog in the World
Intervale Chinooks: History of the Chinook Dog
Downeast Magazine: Leader of the Pack