Explore Alaska


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…