Alaska December 29, 2017
17 Undeniable Differences Between The Northern And Southern Parts of Alaska
Alaska runs 1,420 miles from north to south, almost twice as tall as Texas. The climate, customs and culture of the different regions reflect the adaptions to life in the vastly different conditions. The weather is the largest difference, as the northern part of the state is ruled by the icy grip of winter snow, where the southern islands and coastline are ruled by ocean waters. Check out these undeniable differences between arctic northern and rainy southern Alaska.
1. In the north, Bunny Boots are the fashion. These thickly insulated white monstrosities keep you toasty warm in the most severe cold. They are almost never seen in the southern areas.
2. In southern Alaska, Xtra Tuffs are the year-round choice for foot wear. You will see these in Northern Alaska only in the warm summer months or on a fishing trip south.
3. The growing season in northern Alaska lasts through the warmest months: June, July and most of August. Frosts can come any other time, and sometimes then, too. In southern Alaska, especially on the islands of southeast, you can grow leafy greens all year-round.
4. Bald eagles soar all over the southern parts of Alaska, while they are not often seen in the interior and northern Alaska.
5. In northern Alaska, snow machines are the preferred method of winter transportation, although not so common in the south.
6. In southern Alaska, boats are the year-round choice for transportation. In the north, riverboats are for summer only.
7. Going to work in the north involves shoveling the car out of the snow, keeping it plugged in so it will start, starting it and warming it up for 15 minutes and hoping you make it to work without anything snapping in the cold. In the southern part of Alaska, you just have to worry about the salty air rusting your car in a few years.
8. In northern Alaska, dog mushing is a popular sport and many people who live in rural areas have dog teams. In southern Alaska, mushing isn't nearly as popular.
9. Sea kayaking is a popular sport in the coastal communities of southern Alaska. Northerners only dream of such a luxury.
10. The north has much more darkness and opportunity to see the aurora borealis. The southern parts of the state rarely observe the phenomenon in the night sky.
11. In southern Alaska, cruise ship tourism is king for the local economy. In northern Alaska, people visit all year long to see the aurora and polar bears, when conditions allow for travel.
12. Fresh seafood is always for dinner in southern Alaska. In the north, moose stew is more common for wintertime dining.
13. Northern Alaskan kids are practically born on skis, where their southern contemporaries were born in a boat, if not literally, then figuratively.
14. Glaciers are everywhere in southern Alaska, and much rarer in the northern region.
15. The relentless rain and long stretches of grey days can depress even the most cheerful in southern Alaska. Northern Alaska is spared much of the rain, and the dark winter nights are punctuated with stars and aurora.
16. In southern Alaska, many people work in the commercial fishing industry. In northern Alaska, many work in the oil fields of the north slope.
17. Whale watching is popular in southern Alaska where the waters are rich with humpback whales and orcas. In northern Alaska, bowhead whales and polar bears are more common coastal animals.
For more about northern Alaska, try
Take A Journey To The Top Of The World For The Best Chinese Food in Alaska. For more on southern Alaska, check out This Unique Lodge On The Ocean In Alaska Is Every Fisherman’s Dream.
Do you have a difference to add? Tell us about it in the comments below!