fbpx
Author

Alli Harvey

Browsing

How to visit this accessible ice Tom Faussett, owner of Knik Glacier Tours, is still awe-struck by his vast backyard more than 35 years after making the Matanuska-Susitna valley area home. He marvels at the fact that almost daily throughout the summer he gets to introduce people to the sweeping vista of Knik Glacier and call it work. Alaska is known for casual world-class views, but Knik Glacier is extraordinary in its accessibility. No matter the desired activity or ability level, explorers will find a way to get to the glacier via everything from helicopter and ATV tours to fat-tire biking, airboating, running or skiing. Only an hour’s drive north of Anchorage, Knik’s doable in a day. Easiest At 70 years old, my dad likes to inform me about the 20-mile run he completed before any of us ate breakfast. The truth is he is a whiz at bridge, but…

The Lure of a Mountain Peak I fell in love with my house immediately, thanks to the 6,398-foot-tall Pioneer Peak jutting into the sky behind it. Pioneer looked like Alaska incarnate to me. It dominated my view, rising abruptly from the flat valley floor as the kind of peak you might see if you look up “mountain” in the dictionary. Over nearly five years of living in my home, I tried once, twice, five times to make it to the top of the mountain that loomed above my house. Each time, I fell short. Then, one bright morning in September 2021 after a full summer of strenuous hikes and runs, my husband and I set out for a hike on the Pioneer Trail. We started early, with cool temps leaving dew on leaves underfoot. We climbed at an unhurried but steady pace, gaining elevation as the sun rose higher into…

A uniquely Alaskan footrace “I’m done with that forever!” I shouted into the sunlit yellow birch and aspen forest. After descending the fabled, steep chute section at mile 17 of the Equinox Marathon in Fairbanks, I felt elated and needed to announce my accomplishment to the trees. At that point in the race, runners were spread out along the 26.2-mile course. Under a miraculously blue autumnal sky, the sparsely populated route felt serene. Gaining 3,200-plus feet of elevation, the Equinox is one of the most difficult races in the world. But you wouldn’t know it from local runners. Fairbanks competitors are extraordinarily humble, yet hardy people. I am not one of those people. I count myself lucky to run a mile. I’d refused several alcoholic beverages along the route from encouraging volunteers at homemade aid stations nearing the top of Ester Dome. “Need a beer?” someone asked as I jogged…