Life in Alaska is anything but ordinary. In the last frontier we do things a little differently. We live off the grid, away from the crowds and we are always prepared to weather the storm. We love our seclusion and we are one with nature. We live off the land, we harvest our wild game, we trap animals to produce warm and durable clothing, we eat the freshest seafood in the world – and we don’t apologize for any of it. Check out these 30 life lessons everyone learns growing up in Alaska.
We’re aware that these uncertain times are limiting many aspects of life as we all practice social and physical distancing. While we’re continuing to feature destinations that make our state wonderful, we don’t expect or encourage you to go check them out immediately. We believe that supporting local attractions is important now more than ever and we hope our articles inspire your future adventures! And on that note, please nominate your favorite local business that could use some love right now:
1. Our natural resources are our greatest treasure.
Wild, natural, sustainable seafood is the foundation of life in Alaska. Without our seafood, we would be hurting in so many ways. We love it, we respect it and we take pride in harvesting it responsibly.
2. Living off the land is the responsible thing to do.
Responsible hunting and sourcing wild Alaska game is a responsible way of doing our part. Plus the meat is as organic as it gets!
3. But you'll want to look for the ones with the colorful poop...
Sorry, we had to go there. Everyone learns in Alaska that if you're going to go after a bear, you want the ones that have been eating fresh berries and not loads of salmon. Rule of thumb.
4. Living off the grid is the true American dream in Alaska.
The rat race is so overrated. We'll just take a piece of paradise and call it G-O-O-D!
5. Don’t expect a snow day when you get a blizzard overnight.
Nope, nadda, no way. If this was New York... maybe. But in Alaska, we are expected to have thick skin and power through the storm.
6. You better plan for an extra hour to get to work, because being late due to weather is not acceptable in Alaska.
It's Alaska. Weather conditions are rarely a viable excuse.
7. Be sure to have a block heater in your car and a long extension cord to plug it in overnight.
It might not look "cool" but trust us, you'll be thanking us when your car starts tomorrow morning.
8. Keeping a window scraper in your car from October through April is what smart people do.
A tiny little credit card won't be much help after a day of dumping snow in Alaska. Just say "YES" to the ice scraper.
9. Always wear layers.
From glistening sunshine in the morning to dumping snow in the evening, layers are necessary in Alaska.
10. Function over fashion, always.
Only in Alaska are bunny boots and super cute sled dogs always in style.
11. Don’t go into the backcountry unprepared.
Alaska is a very unforgiving state. Going into the backcountry without a gun, food, clothing layers and being well prepared is a major mistake.
12. Berry picking is a little like playing Russian Roulette.
Look at that vast land of unlimited beauty and delicious berries. Looks pretty good, right? Caution: the bears think so, too!
13. Finding a good hobby is the only way to keep your sanity in the winter.
When our days get long, dark and cold... adventure in the great outdoors is key to loving Alaska all year long.
14. Blackout curtains are a must in the summertime.
You will never know when to go to sleep without em'! And you probably won't want to either.
15. Your backyard will never cease to amaze you.
16. Learning how to fly will give you unlimited possibilities for adventure.
With more pilots per capita than anywhere else in the US, we'd say that the local flying community is onto something good!
17. First and foremost, always respect the wildlife.
Yield to the wildlife. And sit back and enjoy their beautiful, wild spirits.
18. But keep your garden guarded because the wildlife will not always respect you.
A garden without a fence is an invitation for moose friends. And they will even leave you a present in the form of moose droppings in the yard.
19. No matter how long you've lived here, the Northern Lights are worth missing sleep for.
Always. Every! Single! Time! Totally and completely epic.
20. Taking vacation time during dipnetting season is actually the responsible decision.
Don't ever let your boss tell you otherwise! Stocking the freezer to carry you and your family through the wintertime is an essential part of subsistence-based living in the last frontier.
21. Don’t ever leave food outside overnight.
Unless you want to attract those cute and cuddly fuzzy wuzzy bears.
22. Even when you’re camping in the wilderness.
Bear proof traveling containers are a must. Keep food away from camp and elevate if possible.
23. Being bored is nearly impossible.
Skiing, snowboarding, hiking, kayaking, fishing, hunting... the list is endless!
24. If you want to go swimming, don’t do it without a wet suit.
And if you do, you won't last long. Brrr!
25. Alternate forms of transportation can be the key to survival.
And a pretty darn good time, if you ask us!
26. Enjoy that 24 hours of daylight…
You can hibernate in the wintertime, just like the bears!
27. If you want to be a professional athlete, you better stick with dog mushing.
It is our state sport, so this one is pretty much a given.
28. Or hockey.
With cold weather and a seemingly unlimited amount of outdoor ice arenas, hockey is an excellent sport to succeed at in Alaska.
29. For maximum warmth, you're better off harvesting your clothing.
The department store options will never compete with our trap lines. EVER!
30. Fishing all year long is just how we roll.
Hook, line and sinker!