from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun A large open boat used by Yupik and Inuit people, made of skins stretched on a wooden frame, usually propelled by paddles.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun The native name of the women's or larger kind of Eskimo boat, carrying ten or twelve people, and consisting of a wooden frame covered with sealskins, with several seats.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun nautical A large, open boat made of skins stretched over a wooden frame that is propelled by paddles; used by the Inuit for transportation.


from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[Inuit umiaq.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Western Canadian Inuktitut  (umiaq, "women's boat").


  • You can't deny me my umiak this season and you know it.

    The Snow Whale

  • The open-water leads had ended not very far west of the inlet leading south to Back's River — the narrowing strait there was solid ice pack — so they'd had to beach and hide the qayaqs and Asiajuk's umiak and continue on with the six dogs pulling the heavily solid thirteen-foot kamatik.

    The Terror

  • He sat with Nauja in the center of a spacious, open umiak as two of the young hunters paddled for him.

    The Terror

  • Although Asiajuk generously offered to let Silna and her children ride in his now-crowded umiak, she string-messaged her preference for the qayaq, Taliriktug knew that his wife would never want any child of hers — certainly not Kanneyuk, the two-month-old — to be so close to the vicious dogs in such a tight space.

    The Terror

  • Asiajuk and his wife and three of the hunters stayed with the umiak at the mouth of the river, but Crozier and Silence with their children, the still-curious hunter Inupijuk, and the other hunters paddled their qayaqs upriver the three miles or so to the first low falls.

    The Terror

  • No one minded waiting for the umiak when there was no wind for its sails since the thirty-foot-long craft carried enough fresh food in it that they rarely had to stop to hunt or fish unless they wanted to.

    The Terror

  • Inupijuk, the southern hunter, rode in the umiak, as did six Qimmiq — dogs.

    The Terror

  • Now, can I have the baidarka, or do I have to settle for the keys to the umiak?

    Science, Just Science - The Panda's Thumb

  • Communication between the different settlements is maintained by means of the umiak, a boat made of sealskin generally about thirty feet in length.

    The Catholic Encyclopedia, Volume 6: Fathers of the Church-Gregory XI

  • I heard of one _umiak_ (skin boat) only a few years ago having crossed to Cape Chidley from Baffin Land.

    The Long Labrador Trail


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  • The umiak, umiaq, umiac, oomiac or oomiak is a type of boat used by the Inuit for transportation. Its name means "woman's boat," as opposed to the kayak, which means "man's boat".


    February 6, 2008

  • "Those without jobs as laborers in Nome traveled down the Bering coast with their nets to fish for a last batch of salmon or char, and the women would go to work with their curved steel knives, or ulus, and hang the fish up on drying racks to cure in the cold sea air. If they came upon a seal on one of their frequent trips up north, they would shoot it, load it onto their wide, skin-covered boats (umiaks), and, after a rough ride over the waves, bring it home. There it would be skinned to make mukluks and its blubber would be cut, eaten, or rendered into oil for food or fuel."

    --Gay Salisbury and Laney Salisbury, The Cruelest Miles: The Heroic Story of Dogs and Men in a Race against an Epidemic (NY and London: W.W. Norton & Co., 2003), 6

    January 24, 2017