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Old 08-27-2018, 09:19 AM
 
Location: Deltana, AK
857 posts, read 1,612,366 times
Reputation: 1149

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The way I look at it is this:

May-September, Alaska is the best place in the world, no competition.
March-April and October-December, Alaska is equal to the other places I could consider living
January-February, I would prefer to be somewhere else

So, that's 5/6 of the year that Alaska is equal to or better than everywhere else. When I really think about it, nowhere else has that kind of consistent appeal.

In other words, I think the summers are easy for most outdoor-minded people to love, and there are relatively few people who are excited about 6 months of winter, but it's the shoulder seasons that really make or break it for people. Almost as much as nice summer weather, I love watching the changes on either end. The melting of snow, new-found warmth of spring afternoons with migrating birds overhead. The moody, foggy, brown and faded gold season in October, when the northern lights reappear. The first real snow which transforms the landscape almost as much as moving somewhere else. Even the extremes of cold and daylight around winter solstice are new and exciting to me every year.

I'm sure I could do some sort of snowbird lifestyle, but I'm not sure if I could stomach the expense. Well-timed vacations are more where it's at for me.
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Old 08-27-2018, 10:19 AM
 
Location: NP
607 posts, read 850,183 times
Reputation: 632
When I was younger, the winter was an adventure. In middle age it was just something to deal with. Now that I am approaching retirement...it's a pain in the A**! It really hit home a couple of winters ago when I went outside and managed to slip on some snow covered ice in the driveway. I went down and slammed the back of my head pretty hard...saw stars. It was about -20 and snowing and all I could think about was I had to get up or I was going to end up as a white frozen lump in the driveway. No one else was home at the time and it would have been several hours until someone found me. I managed to crawl back inside, but right then and there I decided that I was not going to spend my retirement years here anymore. I suppose the same thing could happen almost anywhere, but Alaska winters can be rather unforgiving for the unfortunate or unprepared.....and warmer climes are calling me.
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Old 08-27-2018, 11:13 AM
 
Location: Wyoming
9,164 posts, read 16,515,249 times
Reputation: 13349
It was nearly 50 years ago and I was in my early 20s when I lived there for 3 years, but I loved that state like I've never loved any place in the world -- yes, year-around. Summers were just too good to comprehend. Winters didn't have enough sun, but a snowmobile and a good camera made them fun too. I lived in Anchorage, and it was getting a little "busy" for my tastes by 1970, but overall, I loved that place summer and winter.

We left after our son was born. My wife didn't think she wanted to continue working, and it was going to be tough buying a new house, supporting a family and making at least one trip out each year to visit family/grandparents. So we left Anchorage, tears streaming down our cheeks. I felt like a traitor, for Alaska had given us the best of everything, yet we left her behind. For the next few years, every time I saw a photo of Alaska I'd get teary-eyed.

That said, at this point in my life (age 72), I don't think I'd be too happy with the dark winters. I very seriously considered moving back several years ago after my wife died. If I could have found the job I wanted, I'm sure I would have. Instead, I've had to console myself with a couple visits back there, fishing and sightseeing. If I could afford it, I'd have a summer home in Alaska on a nice little lake with a float plane.

I settled in Wyoming after Alaska (leaving the second least populated state for the least populated). I've been happy here and it's home, but Alaska is a very special place, and it occupies a special place in my heart.
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Old 08-27-2018, 05:24 PM
 
Location: NW Wyoming
26 posts, read 48,467 times
Reputation: 27
Lived year-around in Alaska for seven years, in the interior south of Fairbanks. Like many, I endured the winter for the sake of the summer. Left for a job transfer opportunity but also because I am a bit of a rolling stone and seven years is about three or four years longer than I typically prefer to live anywhere.

I had a solid employment situation when I moved up there. I am the proverbial jack of all trades but I would never move to rural Alaska without a lock on employment, personally.

IF you don't love winter then don't move there year-round. Winter is different in different parts of the state but it is still winter. I also now live in Wyoming and obviously we have our snow and cold and wind but it is mostly sunny. I mostly missed the sun up there.

There are a lot of things I loved about living there and I've told my wife I would move back if job dictated or retirement provided, preferably in SE (my wife lived for a few years in Gustavus before we met and it's a really nice place), but mid-November though early May will find me in more southern climes - preferably tropical Not doing winters up there ever again.

Quote:
Originally Posted by WyoNewk View Post
It was nearly 50 years ago and I was in my early 20s when I lived there for 3 years, but I loved that state like I've never loved any place in the world -- yes, year-around. Summers were just too good to comprehend. Winters didn't have enough sun, but a snowmobile and a good camera made them fun too. I lived in Anchorage, and it was getting a little "busy" for my tastes by 1970, but overall, I loved that place summer and winter.

We left after our son was born. My wife didn't think she wanted to continue working, and it was going to be tough buying a new house, supporting a family and making at least one trip out each year to visit family/grandparents. So we left Anchorage, tears streaming down our cheeks. I felt like a traitor, for Alaska had given us the best of everything, yet we left her behind. For the next few years, every time I saw a photo of Alaska I'd get teary-eyed.

That said, at this point in my life (age 72), I don't think I'd be too happy with the dark winters. I very seriously considered moving back several years ago after my wife died. If I could have found the job I wanted, I'm sure I would have. Instead, I've had to console myself with a couple visits back there, fishing and sightseeing. If I could afford it, I'd have a summer home in Alaska on a nice little lake with a float plane.

I settled in Wyoming after Alaska (leaving the second least populated state for the least populated). I've been happy here and it's home, but Alaska is a very special place, and it occupies a special place in my heart.

Last edited by alaskaflyer; 08-27-2018 at 05:34 PM..
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