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Thread: I'm 17, Need Help Moving To Alaska!

  1. #1
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    Default I'm 17, Need Help Moving To Alaska!

    Hello, I am Trey, and I want to live the alaskan lifestyle.

    I need information about alaska. I've watched tons of videos, on all sorts of things from hunting, to skinning, to cooking, to building, but actually getting there is the trouble.

    I've heard of apprenticeships, and i'm interested in one. I need to know if you can make a living off of fishing/oil working in alaska. I am behind in high school, but plan on getting my ged, and I know that I can't get that good of a job off of a high school diploma, but i don't plan on buying everything, but actually hunting/crafting it.

    I am going to be saving money, and hopefully bring a rifle for small game, and bigger game, and maybe a shotgun in case of a bear attack. I don't care if I live in a city or completely remote, but i'd rather live sort of close or even with other people until I atleast get the hang of alaska.

    I currently live in florida, and we do not have snow, but I am a naturally hot person. When i went to north carolina there was 3 or 4 inches of snow and I did not find the 19 degree weather cold at all and i wasn't wearing a thick jacket either.

    I understand the way of life is different, but I do not like my life right now. I fell behind in school, and now I know that I wont make it where I live because it is too expensive. I am very healthy, and in shape, and If anyone knows someone who needs general labor, maybe logging or construction, anything that doesn't require high school education or previous experience, i would love to learn. I am a fast learner and I can learn on the job very fast, and I plan to do so.

    Just any advice, tips, or maybe connections to get my alaskan start would be awesome. I turn 18 in march and hopefully plan to move there in the summer.

    And I hope to meet some awesome people and hear alot of stories about how amazing alaska is!!

  2. #2
    Member Bsj425's Avatar
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    I hope this is a joke. But yes you can make money on "oil" working on the slope and fishing if fish are being caught if not well then you're screwed. I would worry about getting caught up in school and graduating on time than this stuff then maybe you can join the military and have them bring you to Alaska for free and you will have some decent money. The "alaskan lifestyle" isnt something you watch on YouTube then do it. Hell living the regular life style in Alaska is hard enough with the cost of living and the cold winters. If you want a true subsistence lifestyle good luck the people that have been doing it their whole lives are now having a hard time with that due to expenses and government regulation whats a man to do when he cant even catch fish for his family for the winter or a quota has been met and hunts get closed.

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    Member Bsj425's Avatar
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    Also take your 19 degree weather you experienced and add another 70 degrees in the opposite direction and that are winter temps here in the interior anyways. Not even comparable I will tell you at +19 in the winter people throw shorts on I wish I were exaggerating but im not.

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    I am not trying to live what I saw on youtube. But I want to live with a beautiful scene, I want to live in the wilderness where it is beautiful. I have trained in Muay Thai and Jiu Jitsu for 2 years and I can garuntee the pain and punishment I go through everyday is worse than cold weather. I didn't ask to be put down from my post, I asked for advice and stories about alaska. Maybe a story of how someone ended up there and their thoughts... etc.

    I appreciate the reply, but I am moving to alaska, regardless of the costs. I will save for two years and sit on 20k and have enough for rent, I don't care. It is a goal of mine I want to accomplish. I actually was looking into military work there, but need my ged, which i should be getting within 3 or so months.

    I understand winters are tough, but I am a tough person, and I know I can make it.

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    Hi Trey
    Let’s be realistic for a bit, you are comparing martial arts to the cold well not realistic. Getting a GED is better than nothing but now a GED does not get you in the military so get back in school.
    No one will hire you up here until you are here that is the way it is, the companies will not hire you out of state in fear that you will run home the first cold spell not saying you will but you are not the first to want to come up here because of the dreams of AK.
    You have no idea about the cost of living here; if you think Florida is high you are in for a surprise coming here. Everything cost you here, to go for a drive will cost about a buck more a gal than outside, food is more here, housing is more here, going out on the town is more here, and living in the bush is very expensive here too.
    I can understand the dream but if you do not have the skills, money to eat & live, and the means to grow this state will break you.
    Now fishing well you have to be on the docks unless you know someone that will vouch for you if not well you have to be on the docks and selling yourself to the Captain. Good luck on that
    I do not want to discourage you but get an education and go in the military in hopes to get sent to AK. Or get an education in a trade that will get you a job up here. AK will always hire someone that wants to work and show up for work.
    I hope this gives you a bit of incite on AK and hope you make up here some day.
    Regards

    Sweepint
    Wasilla, (when not overseas)
    '' Livn' The Dream ''
    26' Hewescraft Cuddy, twin 115 Yam

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    Member hodgeman's Avatar
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    Get yourself a high school diploma.

    You're behind? Get a tutor and catch yourself up or be prepared to be behind your whole life.

    Don't want to go to college? Fine, get yourself a trade- electricians, HVAC, plumbers, welders, heavy equipment and the like are generally in demand and the apprenticeship will take 4-5 years.

    Willing to work hard? Hope so, you'll need to. The less education or skill set your packing- the harder you'll need to work to make it.

    I wish you well in your endeavors and Alaska is a great place. Just be prepared for the reality of what you're facing.
    "I do not deal in hypotheticals. The world, as it is, is vexing enough..." Col. Stonehill, True Grit

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    I understand the conditions are far more than what I have experienced so far. And the thing is, From freshmen to junior year I had my head screwed in wrong and I got 3 years behind, I am supposed to be a senior but am a freshman, The only school in my district up here didn't accept me because I am that far behind. I am willing to do the work but they wont let me, so my next option is a ged. I have 2 years of college tuition payed for, so I plan on getting a two year degree while I am up there.

    I know about struggle, I know it's hard, I know it's not cheap, I know it's a harsh environment. This is part of the reason I want to move there. I want to prove to everyone that i'm not a screw up, that I can not only make a living, but do it in one of the hardest but most beautiful parts of america.

    I understand about hard work, I've done labor my whole life, but recently moved 4 hours away and I don't know anyone in jacksonville and no longer work for the yard company I used to. I've wanted to live in alaska since I was a little kid, but it struck me within the past year that I will be 18 soon and I need to start doing right. I'm going to save up, I'm going to ask for advice (part of the reason I am here), I am going to find a way to make it up there and STRIVE. I don't care what I have to do I will learn every neccesary skill before I move there.

    I appreciate the fact that you guys are trying to help, but trust me, I will make it. I am looking for advice on how to help me on my journey. My uncle is a very succesful oil worker, also mayor of the town he lives in. I most likely am going to learn from him before my move, and also save money. Like I said, I am going to have money to live there for atleast 6 months, food and gas included, and look for a job every day. If it doesn't work, and i'm stuck in alaska, then I will die chasing my dream.

    But I want to prove to everyone who doesn't think I can make it, that I atleast TRIED.

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    Good on you for your attitude - that'll get you partway there. The above fellows are right that a high school diploma is step #1. You may not heed that advice, but you really should, regardless of whether you want to do physical labor or not. Many oil field workers have college degrees and I would bet that almost all have diplomas. Competition for those jobs can be fierce, so there's little reason for the companies to give the job to someone with a GED if they have better qualified applicants. Not trying to be down on you - that's just the reality. One option would be to move to Anchorage and contact Nine Star. Nine Star helps adults get their high school diploma on an accelerated schedule, not just a GED. It's something to think about.

    Another thing to think about would be oil-specific training. Two members here - hunt_ak and Alaska_Lanche - are brothers who both went to a training program down in the Kenai/Soldotna area. I don't know the specifics, but if I recall correctly it was a two-year program and both of them landed pretty sweet jobs that they have advanced in following that training.

    Whether oil, fishing, or whatever job you want, more education will lead to better work conditions, greater income, and more opportunities in your future. Sure, come on up to Alaska - but don't settle for a future hampered by a lack of further education.

    If you want stories about Alaska, well, there's 65 forums here filled with them. Keep dreaming, young man - it's possible.

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    Member hodgeman's Avatar
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    I'll follow on to what Brian said about competition. I do hiring for a large corporation. I look at literally hundreds (some years, well over a thousand) of resumes for something on the order of 20-30 openings annually. The screening process is such that in the application process, if you don't have a diploma I'll likely never see your resume or application. You might be a great guy and well qualified- but the hiring manager may never even get a look at you. I don't put a lot of stock in education per se- meaning I don't let it be the measure of a man's intellect or worth (I've known both the educated idiot and the uneducated genius...) and I certainly applaud your attitude but a certain amount of education is required to enter certain fields. Enrolling in a program that will get you a regular diploma vs. a GED is a great idea.

    I'll tell you- in the modern job environment you'd better never quit learning and training. I tell my employees that if they don't like training and acquiring new skills they're going to like irrelevance a lot less.
    "I do not deal in hypotheticals. The world, as it is, is vexing enough..." Col. Stonehill, True Grit

  10. #10
    Member Bsj425's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trey View Post
    I understand the conditions are far more than what I have experienced so far. And the thing is, From freshmen to junior year I had my head screwed in wrong and I got 3 years behind, I am supposed to be a senior but am a freshman, The only school in my district up here didn't accept me because I am that far behind. I am willing to do the work but they wont let me, so my next option is a ged. I have 2 years of college tuition payed for, so I plan on getting a two year degree while I am up there.

    I know about struggle, I know it's hard, I know it's not cheap, I know it's a harsh environment. This is part of the reason I want to move there. I want to prove to everyone that i'm not a screw up, that I can not only make a living, but do it in one of the hardest but most beautiful parts of america.

    I understand about hard work, I've done labor my whole life, but recently moved 4 hours away and I don't know anyone in jacksonville and no longer work for the yard company I used to. I've wanted to live in alaska since I was a little kid, but it struck me within the past year that I will be 18 soon and I need to start doing right. I'm going to save up, I'm going to ask for advice (part of the reason I am here), I am going to find a way to make it up there and STRIVE. I don't care what I have to do I will learn every neccesary skill before I move there.

    I appreciate the fact that you guys are trying to help, but trust me, I will make it. I am looking for advice on how to help me on my journey. My uncle is a very succesful oil worker, also mayor of the town he lives in. I most likely am going to learn from him before my move, and also saveLike I said, I am going to have money to live there for atleast 6 months, food and gas included, and look for a job every day. If it doesn't w money. ork, and i'm stuck in alaska, then I will die chasing my dream.

    But I want to prove to everyone who doesn't think I can make it, that I at least TRIED.
    Just to let you know that's about 15,000-25,000 dollars figure for rent too. You can get a hole in the wall dry cabin for less but an honest factor is around 15,000-25,000 depending on what region you settle in may be more may be less but youre going to need a vehicle for transportation gas for said vehicle is around $4 dollars a gallon and will probably go up again as winter comes need insurance for vehicle + food + rent. Just giving you a figure on what to save for again im not trying to rain on your parade or come down on you just dont want to see you fail because up here failing can mean death depending on what time of year it is and where you're at.

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    Member 4merguide's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trey View Post

    I know about struggle, I know it's hard, I know it's not cheap, I know it's a harsh environment.
    Sorry to say.....you're 17......you really don't know. Stay in school......
    Sheep hunting...... the pain goes away, but the stupidity remains...!!!

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    Never let those who failed to live their dream, crush your spirit. You only get one life, and you don't want to get to the end of it (your life) and discover you lived someone else's vision of what your live should be. Come as soon as you can. I ran away from home at 15, and never went back, been in Alaska 42+ years, and I have NO regrets.

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    You don't need $20,000 to start your life here. I came up here 11 years ago with less than $3,000 and had a wife and kids ta boot.

    You've got the can-do attitude. Thats a great thing. As the other guys have said, get your education, first and foremost.

    Don't let the Debbie Downers down ya. You've got a dream, go for it kiddo!
    I am serious... and don't call me Shirley.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KM2K7sV-K74

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    Education, Education, Education! It can only help. My oldest son didn't finish high school and went on to get his GED through AMYA - Alaska Military Youth Acadmey and still can't get into the military very easy because he had some legal trouble as a teen with his 'buddies'. He cleaned up his act and got an apprenticeship attending free classes in Anchorage for construction. I will see if I can find the program name when I get home.
    Your attitude is commendable and in my book, as long as you are sincere, that will help you go a long way.

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    Thanks for the advice guys. Since reading these i've actually found a program called Jobs Corp, They have one in alaska. I can get my ged/diploma/college, and they pay me to stay there, and help me get a job when I get out. I didn't realize I still had a chance to get my diploma, being 3 years behind is alot to look at. Hopefully I can convince my mom to either let me move up before I'm 18 or just save up my own for the flight up there.

    I understand education is a must, and it is a major role now. I actually have an uncle who has been doing oil for 20+ years or so in lousianna and i'm thinking about moving there for maybe a year or so, that way I have experience, an education, and a great attitude in moving up there. And I was thinking about it, i'm really not doing this to prove it to anyone else. I'm doing it to prove myself wrong, and show myself that i'm not the kid I used to be. I don't have any criminal record besides a tresspassing charge but it got dropped and has since been put off of my record. and I don't plan on ever breaking the law again, trust me.

    Thank you for those who aren't just saying "You need this, you need that." Like i said in the original post, I need ADVICE from wise people who can help me on my journey, not steer me away. Trust me, i've been in the ring with guys weighing 170 and i'm a whopping (hahaha) 140 pounds, and I could have quit, I could have just said whatever and went home. But I ended up winning, and trust me, I don't think anything you guys say can scare me. Hell, you can go ahead and try!

    But anyways, I hope this program I found will really help. A diploma and help getting a job is an offer i'm not going to pass up.
    And I appreciate the help and support for those of you who do realize that my dream is not an impossible one.

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    Good find on your part! I can't believe I forgot about Job Corps. They have a beautiful campus in Palmer. My youngest son has signed up and they are fixing to send him to Oregon for Security Training.

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    Trey,

    I don't have much advice other than keep don't give up. My wife's cousin always wanted to be a commercial fisherman in Alaska. Growing up in CA he would tell people that's what he wanted to do and they would just laugh. When he got out of high school he moved to southeast Alaska and pursued his dream. He started by leasing a boat and drift gillnet permit from an old lady, asked around and scrounged up enough net scraps to sew himself together a 300 fathom long gillnet (that's 900 ft.) He fished that for a couple years and bought himself a trolling permit and his own boat. Couple years later he had saved up enough to buy a gillnet permit and a newer boat. Last year between a great salmon year, as well as a few other side fisheries he was able to put away about $100,000. When he went home to visit they all asked, what are you doing now? When he said "I'm a commercial fisherman and boat captain in Alaska." Their jaws dropped. Alaska is people like you, dreamers and doers following their passion with a hope for a better life. Keep following your passion and be sure to let us all now how it works out.
    I'd agree with you, but then we'd both be wrong.

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    Member Derby06's Avatar
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    Much of the Alaskan lifestyle closely resembles the lifestyles of every other US citizen. We work for what we have and live accordingly. Some better than others.
    You say your head hasn’t been screwed on right which sounds about right, but suddenly your head is screwed on straight and tight? Is it possible? yes… Likely? NO.
    For those encouraging, I say you or those you know are very much in the minority. Not to mention your stories are many years old. You yourselves know times and Alaska has changed. Would you encourage your own children with the same past and situation as Trey has described to ‘Go for it’….I think Not.

    Trey,
    I am by far not the smartest, wisest, or oldest on this board, but trust me son, your plan is seriously flawed. Slow down, Rome was not built in a day—Work your way up and into your dreams. Getting some experience where you have some support before you try this is the smartest thing you’ve posted. I’m young, single, got 20K, and gonna head North won’t go far.

  19. #19
    Member Vince's Avatar
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    wheres my buddy Andrew at?
    "If you are on a continuous search to be offended, you will always find what you are looking for; even when it isn't there."

    meet on face book here

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    Member tustumena_lake's Avatar
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    Trey,

    When you come up have a vehicle that you can live out of. Something like a minivan that gets pretty good gas mileage but you can set up a bed in the back. You'd be surprised at how little you really need. When you get here it needs to be in the spring or summer not winter, that way you can set up a camp somewhere you can park for free while you are looking for a job and not pay rent. Spring is a good time to look for a labor type job like at a fish cannery or remote lodge where they provide some of your food and lodging. Some lodges advertise for caretakers throughout the winter you might be able to roll into that job after the tourist season ends.

    There are places you can park your van where you won't get hassled, we can help you with that by telling you where that is, and instead of a rifle a fishing pole might get you a better return for your effort on a daily basis. Sounds like a grand adventure to me, start saving up.

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