Caribou for the taking (08 July 08 12...
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Panoramische foto door Matt Nolan EXPERT Genomen 12:58, 07/07/2008 - Views loading...

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Caribou for the taking (08 July 08 12:58)

The World > North America > USA > Alaska > Arctic National Wildlife Refuge

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It seems like caribou are always in season in Kaktovik.  An unfortunate herd wandered too close to town the day before, and everyone's freezer suddenly overflowed with meat.

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Panorama's in de omgeving van Arctic National Wildlife Refuge

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A: Snow fence on Barter Island (09 July 08 16:53)

door Matt Nolan, 560 hier vandaan

Snow fences help control where blowing snow settles.  By slowing down the wind, the snow settles here...

Snow fence on Barter Island (09 July 08 16:53)

B: Staging gear at Barter Island's runway (23 April 08)

door Matt Nolan, 1.2 hier vandaan

We have found and sorted all of the gear shipped to Kaktovik, and are now waiting for ski plane trans...

Staging gear at Barter Island's runway (23 April 08)

C: Eroding bluffs in Kaktovik (03 July 08 1236)

door Matt Nolan, 1.2 hier vandaan

Ice-rich bluffs on Barter Island thaw and slump into the ocean, eroding the coastline.

Eroding bluffs in Kaktovik (03 July 08 1236)

D: Eroding bluffs on barter island (03 July 08 1147)

door Matt Nolan, 1.8 hier vandaan

Ice-rich bluffs on Barter Island erode thermally and slump into the ocean, causing the shoreline to g...

Eroding bluffs on barter island (03 July 08 1147)

E: The bonepile in Kaktovik (07 July 08 08:51)

door Matt Nolan, 2.4 hier vandaan

The local hunt whales, and leave the carcasses here once they take the meat off.  The polar bears kno...

The bonepile in Kaktovik (07 July 08 08:51)

F: Pano 110820 Hulahula Mudflats

door Matt Nolan, 20.3 hier vandaan

Our last camping spot of our Hulahula River float trip was on the last bit of tundra before the ocean...

Pano 110820 Hulahula Mudflats

G: Pano 110819 Hulahula

door Matt Nolan, 22.3 hier vandaan

We had a long day from Fish Hole 1 to here, the 5 mile strip.  We decided it would be best to camp at...

Pano 110819 Hulahula

H: Pano 110818 Hulahula Lunch

door Matt Nolan, 38.1 hier vandaan

On our trip from the mountains to coast, we took a break here for lunch and science.

Pano 110818 Hulahula Lunch

I: ANWR Jago River (08 July 08 1604)

door Matt Nolan, 44.9 hier vandaan

This panorama was taken during a trip to collect GPS ground control points for a new topographic map ...

ANWR Jago River (08 July 08 1604)

J: ANWR Jago Bitty (08 July 08 1345)

door Matt Nolan, 45.0 hier vandaan

This panorama was taken at the Bitty airstrip near the Jago River.  We measured GPS ground control po...

ANWR Jago Bitty (08 July 08 1345)

Dit panorama is genomen in Arctic National Wildlife Refuge

Dit is een overzicht van Arctic National Wildlife Refuge

The biggest city in Alaska is Anchorage, sitting in Cook Inlet on the coast of the north pacific. Suburban expansion in Anchorage means houses are being built up into the mountains behind the city.

People in these new developments complain about "the wildlife" sometimes but you know what? You're gonna get moose in your yard when you build houses on their terrain. They will eat your flowers and sleep in your driveway, and stare at you over the top of a parked full-size pickup truck. They're like cows on stilts. I'm just trying to give you an idea of the scale of things up in Alaska, where there are more small planes per capita than anywhere else in the US. Many small villages get their fuel supply flown in by large aircraft, and that's it for the year.

North of Anchorage there are six hundred miles of mountains with very few roads or people, and then up at the top of that expanse is the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. It's about nineteen million acres of space, or seventy-seven thousand square kilometers.

If you put a map of the state of Alaska on top of a map of the United States, Alaska would cover half of the country. Alaska by itself is the size of half of the United States. That's an easy idea to miss because most maps shrink Alaska when they show it next to the continental U.S.

Back to the pictures: locals in Kavtovik make use of the natural environment. Whale bones on the beach are an example of the subsistence lifestyle which has been going on here for long before airplanes and panoramic pictures.

Alaska is beautiful in the fall season. Fireweed turns bright red and the birch trees change to gold. You have no idea what air is supposed to smell like until you visit Alaska.

This is a really interesting set of pictures. Scientists get the award for "most thorough documentation" of a spot.

Okay, I haven't personally been up as far as AWNR, but I can tell you just from hiking Girdwood that it's a very very amazing feeling to walk for a while, turn around, and see absolutely nothing man-made anywhere in your field of vision, except your boots.

Mattanuska Thunder!

Text by Steve Smith.

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