Although Alaska is often left off the travel list because of its challenging climate and remote location, Alaska is certainly where one discovers new exciting surprises around each bend in the trail, channel, or glacier. When presented with the opportunity to move to Southeast Alaska for the summer, I took it. I’m proud to say that I’m well traveled both domestically and internationally, but I found myself rather ignorant of Alaska. Although, I probably should have, I didn’t do much research. So instead, I dove in. I have educated myself firsthand about this little precious piece of Alaska, which I have found over the last four months to be only the tip of the iceberg.
If you enjoy adventures, the outdoors, and viewing all forms of nature up close and personal, Alaska is a dream spot. The weather presents challenges, but as any traveler knows, it is all about the gear. If you come prepared for damp, chilly, or even cold temperatures, you will enjoy Southeast Alaska. The locals say that there really isn’t bad weather, only bad gear. So yes, it rains in Southeast Alaska. In fact, little did I know that the Tongass National Forest was a rainforest. Quite honestly, I never expected to experience a rainforest in a place like this. I always pictured Costa Rica, the Amazon, or another tropical climate. Regardless, here’s a major tip – if you want to discover what this slice of heaven has to offer, bring rain gear and lots of it. Just like you wouldn’t go to the Sahara without the appropriate survival gear like head wraps, light weight breathable clothing, sunglasses, sunscreen, and good footwear, you don’t come for a good time to Juneau, Skagway, Haines, or any other Southeast Alaskan town without your rain gear.
Once you are prepared with rain pants, raincoat, hood, waterproof hiking boots, or Xtratufs (the Alaska version of all weather footwear), neoprene gloves, extra socks, hat, and even a waterproof backpack, you are ready to follow in some of my footsteps or uncover some adventures of your own.