What is Alaska famous for? Find out more about this 49th-state with these interesting details concerning Alaska, which you could be sure to share with your family and friends or use to improve your school report or get a leg up at trivia night.
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Best Facts About Alaska
- Alaska is the home of 17 of the tallest mountains. Out of the top 20 mountains within the U.S., 17 are located in Alaska, including Denali, the highest mountain in North America (20,320 feet above sea level), and Denali. According to a National Park Service article, nine Alaska Native groups and five Athabaskan languages have distinct names for Denali, which all translate to a different form of “The Great One” or “The Tall One.”
- Alaska contains hundreds of volcanoes as well as volcanic fields. Alaska has more Volcanic fields and volcanoes than every other State within the U.S. Be assured that, by the U.S. Geological Survey, Alaska volcanoes have triggered one or two eruptions since 1900.
- The State has more than three thousand rivers and three million lakes within Alaska. You can choose to paddle on tranquil waters or ride on the rapids of a kayak; Alaska has it all.
- Alaska’s biggest lake is Lake Iliamna. It’s 77 miles long. It’s near twice as large as Connecticut if you believe the right people that it’s also the home of a famous monster (or maybe it’s just sleeping sharks).
- Alaska has more beaches than all of the U.S. combined (more than 34,000 miles). This is all the beaches with no crowds! Florida is the state with the second-longest coast. Florida has 8.436 miles of coastline (just 25 percent of the coastline Alaska can offer).
- Alaska is 14.2 percent water. As per USGS, Alaska has 94,743 square miles of water surface within the State. How dry does your region get?
- Alaska has coastlines that span three different oceans. They are the Arctic Ocean, Pacific Ocean, and the Bering Sea. Choose your Alaska holiday based on which body of water you would like to go to!
- The majority of U.S. glaciers are in Alaska. According to the most recent extensive survey of 2011, there were approximately 27,000 glaciers within Alaska.
- A little over three percent of Alaska has glaciers. If you’re interested in seeing stunning blue ice hundreds of thousands of years old and pristine, a trip to Alaska could be the right option.
- Alaska is active in seismic activity. Its Alaska Earthquake Center has reported more than 150,000 earthquakes over the past five years. Thirty-one of them were magnitudes of at least 6. Of the eight largest earthquakes recorded around the globe, three were recorded in Alaska. Although these earthquake numbers may seem frightening, many of them occur in areas that are not populated or are so tiny that they aren’t felt.
- Alaska does not have poison oak or poison ivy. The hiker should be aware of plants such as cow parsnip and devils’ club, which could trigger reactions in some people.
- The two largest forests in the country are in Alaska. In Alaska, the Tongass in the Southeast comprises 16.8 million acres, and the Chugach in Southcentral comprises 4.8 million acres.
- Alaska refers to “The Great Land.” The name originates in”The Great Land” in the Aleut phrase Alyeska.
- The Alaska flag was designed by a teenager aged 13. Benny Benson designed the flag in 1926. It became the state flag of Alaska following Alaska’s admission to the Union in 1959.
- The bird that is the state bird in Alaska includes the willow ptarmigan. People joke that the state-wide bird is the mosquito.
- The official sport in Alaska is mushing with dogs. This was once the most popular mode of transport across most of Alaska. The Iditarod Trail, Dog Sled Race, happens to be Alaska’s biggest sports event.
- The population density is one person per sq mile. This gives plenty of space to explore without huge crowds.
- Alaska is the state with the lowest population density in the country. If Manhattan, New York, had the same density as Alaska, only 16 inhabitants would reside on the islands.
- A majority of Alaskans are males. Around 52% of Alaskans are male, which is the most of any state.
- Alaska Natives comprise 18% of Alaska’s population. There are 224 federally recognized tribes as well as 20 indigenous languages spoken throughout the State.
- The most northern, easternmost, and westernmost locations in the U.S. are found in Alaska. It’s true! Point Barrow in the north, Eastern and Western points belongs to the Aleutian Chain. Pochnoi Point on Semisopochnoi Island in the Aleutians region is the easternmost point. Amatignak Island is the westernmost point due to its location east of the 180-degree longitude.
- Alaska is located approximately 50 miles away from Russia. If you could travel across the ocean, you might be there in less than an hour!
- Barrow is the city with the most northern apprehensions. Barrow is also home to its most and the shortest amount of daylight hours in the State. The sun rises on May 10 and sets on May 10; it stays up for almost three months. It is set on November 18; Barrow residents do not get to see the sun for more than two months. A summer visit to Barrow can help you discover why Alaska is called”the Land of the Midnight Sun.
- About one-third of Alaska’s land area is located in an area known as the Arctic Circle. From Fairbanks, it’s simple to travel towards and from the Arctic Circle. This is a bucket-list thing we’d all like to tick off!
- Northern lights can be observed in Alaska. Aurora borealis (northern lights) are visible for an average of the entire year for 243 days within Fairbanks. Northern lights are generated through charged electrons and protons hitting the earth’s upper atmosphere.
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Weather in Alaska
- Fairbanks is a place that experiences low temperatures. The average high temperature in Fairbanks in January is just 1°, and the mean lowest temperature is 17. lower than zero. Don’t be scared of the frigid winter; with plenty of layers, you’ll be prepared to hunt for Northern lights for an hour or so.
- Alaska is blessed with mild summers. The record for the highest temperature within Alaska reached 100°F in Fort Yukon in 1915. If the cold winter temperatures of Fairbanks aren’t your style, then plan your interior Alaska vacation in the summer to experience warmer temperatures.
- Alaska has the coldest temperature ever recorded within the U.S. The coldest temperature measured in Alaska was -80 degrees in Prospect Creek Camp in 1971.
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Alaska History and the quirks
- Alaska is a part of Gold Rush history. There is a theory that there was a Klondike Gold Rush in 1897. Potatoes were so valued because of the vitamin C that people exchanged gold in exchange for them. We’re not worried, we’ve got plenty of high-quality vitamin C foods today, so if you decide to try your pan for gold, you won’t have to trade it away in exchange for potatoes.
- Alaska is home to World War II history. The only battle in World War II conducted on American soil was in 1943, following the Japanese attacked The Aleutian Islands. The Battle of Attu was fought between May 11 and May 30.
- Alaska was discovered by strangers in 1741. Danish exploration Vitus Jonassen Bering first spotted the State while traveling from Siberia. Russian hunter groups began to travel to the State, and the first officially recognized Russian colony was established in 1784 on Kodiak Island in 1784.
- Russia has sold Alaska for $7.2 million to the U.S. for $7.2 million. This deal initially was mocked and referred to as “Seward’s Folly” and other names in the media. When gold was discovered in 1898, people began flocking to the region. Today, Alaska celebrates Seward’s Day each March 30 to mark the sale.
- People from Alaska celebrate Alaska Day each October 18. This holiday celebrates the formal transfer of Alaska’s territory.
- Anchorage is the home of a special spot. It is located on Upper Huffman Road in Anchorage on Gravity Hill. The laws of physics do not apply (if they are only illusions). A car that is in neutral at the bottom of the hill goes up instead of downwards!
- Some claims have been made regarding supernatural activities. It is believed that Wendy Williamson Auditorium on the University of Alaska Anchorage campus is believed to be haunted, and there are numerous stories of bizarre happenings at the theater.
- You can use the word “Alaska” on one row of the keyboard. You can try it. We know you’d like to!
- The huge size of vegetables is commonplace in Alaska. At the Alaska State Fair, farmers showcase their huge vegetables and attempt to break world records. Scott Robb still holds the world record for his 138.25-pound cabbage that was presented in the year 2012. Scott and Mardie Robb also has the record for the largest turnip in the world, measuring 39 pounds and 3 1 ounces. That’s quite a lot of coleslaw!
Fishing and wildlife within the State of 49th
- The biggest salmon ever caught was caught at the Kenai River. It weighed the weight of 97 pounds and 4 ounces.
- The Pribilof Islands have the largest collection of Northern Fur Seals. Around half of all northern fur seals migrate to the islands for breeding or take a haul-out.
- Kodiak bears can weigh up to 1,500 pounds. They can reach 10 feet tall and stand on their hind feet.
- The moose’s weight can reach 1600 pounds. Their antlers could be as wide as 6 feet.
Information about Alaska’s industry and economy
- Alaska doesn’t have an official sales tax for state residents. Alaska is the one State in the country that does not charge sales tax to the State, nor does it assess a personal income tax (some cities do have a sales tax, but not all).
- Seafood is a huge business. Based on the Alaska Seafood Marketing Institute, seafood is the primary source of income for numerous rural communities. More than 21,200 residents, or 15% of the rural workers, work directly for the seafood industry.
- Alaska has the highest volume of commercially-focused fisheries in the U.S. Five species of salmon and four crab species, and cod, shrimp, Halibut, and more are caught in Alaska.
- Prudhoe Bay is North America’s biggest oil field. It is situated along the northern coast of the State.
- The trans-Alaska pipeline covers over 800 miles. It traverses a difficult landscape (including three mountain ranges) from Prudhoe Bay to Valdez. Over 18 billion barrels of oil have been moved across the pipe. The pipeline project employed 77,000 workers between 1969 and its finalization in 1977.
- Alaska has a pilot population of 10,378. With more than one percent of the State’s population with at least one level of certification, the State is 3.6 times more than those in the U.S. average. Alaska also has four times the amount of runways in a square mile. This could be because many areas in Alaska can only be reached via water or air.
- Seaplanes are very popular in Alaska. Lake Hood in Anchorage is the largest and most frequent seaplane base.
- Zinc is the largest mineral Alaska has to export. However, gold could be the thing Alaska is most well-known for.