Thinking Alaska bound... Where should I go? (1 Viewer)

Ohiowanderer

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Can Anyone recommend a city in Alaska to visit? I figure I'll pick a spot and scope it out. Any thoughts? Stories? I'd love to hear any and all
Spots to avoid? Tips?
 
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Laski North

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I live in Alaska and I would really recommend coming in the summer for a more pleasant experience. I would recommend you visiting Homer, and Seward (my favorite humble little fishing towns), as well as Whittier to sleep in the all awesome abandoned Buckner building. Anchorage is the biggest city and there is some cool events going on around here sometimes and you can meet the most people in A town as well. If you are in Anchorage, the day time is amazing to explore everywhere but during the night watch yourself around Spenard, Mountainveiw, and Downtown. You are more safe in the light, and theres not much of light in the winter... Again, come in the summer. Anchorage is severely crime and drug ridden but still a nice town if you find the right stuff to do.
 
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Ohiowanderer

Ohiowanderer

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Wow I thank you for the info **grabs a note book and pen**. I had a feeling anchorage would be shifty after scoping out their craigslist ads. Wtf? Entertaining to say the least. I'll take the advice and wait. I'm in need of a change but feeling very *lost* almost like I need someone to grab my hand
...I have no idea where to go or what to do and the universe is giving me a big unknowing shrug it seems. Meh.
 

iamwhatiam

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hey i grew up in southeast AK. i would DEFINITELY recommend taking the ferry from Bellingham to Ketchikan to begin with. yeah, it's a little more expensive than flying but it's a fucking beautiful 2.5 day ride up the inside passage and a good introduction to the state. you can camp on the back deck under the heat lamps or find a spot inside to sleep. don't need to buy a cabin. BYOB and pot up with you.
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some places I'd recommend...

-Ketchikan - "Salmon Capitol of the World". A lot of the downtown area is boardwalk built above the water on pilings. creek street used to be the red light district...you can still take a tour of Dolly's House (the old whorehouse that serviced all the fisherman, loggers, etc). they closed the business down in the 50's but left a lot of the artifacts as they were, including old silk condoms about the place. the iconic tunnel downtown used to be the only tunnel in the world you could go through, around, over, or under. lots of bars if that's your thing and a decent music/arts community for the population of the town. tons of fucking tourists in the summer. good bus system to get around. averages 13 ft of rain a year!!! If you have extra $$ to blow, I recommend taking the Misty Fjords boat/plane tour.

-Sitka- Also a good bus system to get around. Russians settled there back in the day so there's some cool architectural cathedrals and shit downtown. Everywhere in southeast AK is beautiful, but Sitka is up there. A few fun bars. There's a bear sanctuary out by the end of one of the bus routes I'd recommend checking out....(if you visit in the summer months, stash your pack in the woods before going in and tell them you work at the cannery nearby and you'll get in free). while you're out there, hitch a ride to Bear Lake trailhead I think it is....there's a beautiful waterfall along the hike that's like several hundred feet high.

-Juneau - the capitol of AK and the biggest town/city in southeast. definitely hit up the mendenhall glacier while there. i've only spent a few days there way back when so i don't have much info on this town.

there's plenty of other little villages & towns to explore, but those are the major hubs in southeast.
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-Anchorage- aka skankorage...the armpit of Alaska. spend 2 or 3 days there to say you've been and hit up some music venues while there. like someone else said, be real careful there at night. avoid the said areas, and be careful which homeless/natives you choose to hang out and get drunk with. there can be good busking opportunities near the plaza in the summer. when you've had your fill of the city, head out to Girdwood to recuperate.

-Girdwood - Beautiful drive from Anchorage. Home to the Girdwood Forest Fair music festival where there'll be some magic to be found ;) Alyeska ski resort is also there.

- Then continue on to Kenai, Homer, Seward on the beautiful fucking Kenai peninsula!!! Definitely another must see area. While you're in Homer, don't forget to head to the spit and whet yer whistle at the Salty Dawg saloon.

- As you make your way back north up the interior it will be easy peasy hitchhiking if that's your mode of transportation. If you pick ONE music fest to hit up while you're in AK in the summer....WITHOUT A DOUBT... Trapper Creek Bluegrass fest on Boot's property in Trapper Creek is an Alaskan rite of passage. he used to put on 2 different ones so make sure you go to the more adult friendly one lol https://www.facebook.com/bootsbisonranch/ you can thank me later :) it's where I first saw Blackbird Raum play.

- Fairbanks is a college town. (Free showers at the university). College Coffeehouse (good place for day olds, free bagels, etc) by the university or The Marlin bar is good place to meet kids and find potential cabins where you could crash while you stay. Fairbanks is The Dumpster Diving capital of the world with numerous transfer stations strewn about the city free for the pickings...although currently under threat from yuppie bureaucrats.

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Anyways, I've rambled on enough. When you head up there lemme know and I can shoot you some names of people that might have a couch to crash on or at the very least can show you around, but you won't have problems making lots of new friends there. It's a fun state to backpack around.

Oh yeah.....and pick up a copy of The Milepost for your research on places to explore in AK.
 
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Ohiowanderer

Ohiowanderer

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Wow, really...Thank you #iamwhatiam,
I feel like I owe you one brother. You should write for Frommers. Man, you guys got me stoked for next summer.
 
G

Grubblin

I deleted myself
Wait until the weather warms and you'll find it a much more accommodating experience wherever you go. I really liked Petersburg. It's smaller than some, bigger than most. Several canaries for summer work and the night life wasn't so bad. Your on the right track though, Alaska has to be experienced to be believed. I've tried to get back there again and again with no luck. Maybe tomorrow, if not, then the next day. Good luck!
 

pallaway

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Joined
Jul 9, 2017
Messages
144
Hometown
Memphis
This post made me really wanna go to Alaska next summer!! That was like a perfect layout of what to do. I have to go to Alaska. I was born there, but never experienced it except as a baby to young to remember. My mom and dad just happened to be there when I was born. "My mom and dad" that had a certain odd feeling when I wrote those words together lol.
 

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