Mitchell Poling –
Alaska Chugach Aleut Kayaks
Mitch Poling handcrafts and carves the frames from red and yellow cedar. They are built traditionally with lashings, no metal parts are used.
They are art and they are excellent sea kayaks. They offer a connection to
the sea and its environment that is truly special.
Mitch lived in the Chugach Aleut village of Chenega, Alaska in the 1940’s. He learned to paddle in the traditional three man sealskin covered kayaks (baidarkas), and spent many hours in the boathouse where they were built.
In 2002 he measured the last remaining Chenega baidarka in the museum at Cordova, Alaska and built one for himself.
He now builds kayaks at the Nuchek Spirit Camp near Cordova, working with the Chugach people who are reviving their ancient