We got a kick out of this Alaska map from Williwaw Publishing Company in Haines, which alludes tongue-in-cheek to the afterthought, out-of-rightful-proportion treatment of Alaska by many map publishers in placing our great state in a small box off the coast of California on maps of the “United States of America.”
Exploring chilly new vistas
Hiking is something Audra Matolka has long enjoyed, but until two years ago, she had never tried heading out on trails in the fall and winter months.
“I wanted to keep active and my friend convinced me to do it,” said Matolka, who, until recently, lived in Palmer. “It had never occurred to me to do that. At first I didn’t want to; I thought it sounded really scary, didn’t think it was safe.” Then, she said jokingly, “I went (hiking) when I realized my friends didn’t die.”
Hiking in Alaska is tricky business. It might be a hot, sun-shining clear day when you start up a trail, a great day to travel light and just leave the pack in the car. Then, halfway up a trail on, say, Lazy Mountain, everything will change. Suddenly thick clouds rapidly waft in, a chill wind escalates and sleet falls—in June! Some of my friends are just beginning to discover hiking. The first words I heard from each of them before our first time out were variations of “What do I bring? I don’t know what to bring!”