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Thread: Would you move to Alaska again?

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    Member hunterdave's Avatar
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    Default Would you move to Alaska again?

    For those of you who moved to Alaska from elsewhere, would you do it again and why?


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    Moderator kingfisherktn's Avatar
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    I came up when I was 24 in 1972. The only regret is I should have come sooner.

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    Member logman 49's Avatar
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    Hunterdave, I left Wisconsin in 1989 and never looked back. Like Kingfisherktn said, only regret is I didn't move sooner.

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    Me too. The job that brought me up turned out to be awful, a mind-bogglingly bad mess of a situation, drove me crazy and gave me ulcers. And you know what? I'd go through that again if it were the only way to get up here (fortunately it's not, but ... ). Like the other, I'm only sorry I didn't come up sooner.

    I do know some folks who've regretted it but not one of them is an outdoorsman/woman.
    Mushing Tech: squeezing the romance out of dog mushing one post at a time

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    Supporting Member Old John's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hunterdave View Post
    For those of you who moved to Alaska from elsewhere, would you do it again and why?
    In a heart beat. because this is the place I wanted to be!

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    Member power drifter's Avatar
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    Moved here over 30 years ago and like others I only wish I'd got here sooner, but for me that would mean a whole other life time as I did get here as soon as I could. The only thing I wish to have a chance to do over would be to look closely where you are going to live. Alaska is a big place and Like most I needed to be close to work when I got here. I went out far enough then to live 25 years with no neighbor in sight. So now I find myself near an overgrown town that wants to be a city and there is to many people near by for what I came here for with 2 new neighbors now in my view. I know just move I'm not a tree. That gets harder as time has gone on with owning property and work and close friends. I do think about moving from where I'm at now often, and now with my Art/Craft I can go live anywhere and not worry about living close to where someone else will give me work. If I do bag up and move one day it will still be in Alaska where ever I go.

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    Member kodiakrain's Avatar
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    I was born up here, and believe it or not,... my folks, left like three months later,
    after being up here for ten years or so,...
    Dad got a good job offer I guess, and they were tired of living in a little trailer with, "now," 4 kids,...

    Raised in mostly Colorado, all I could think about was getting back up, to "Build my cabin in the woods,..."
    two months after my HS graduation, I made it back
    have never called any other place home since that day in 1978, (even finished cabin in woods, around '83 or so)

    "Absolutely,..." to whether I would come back,...partly, because as someone else mentioned, it's where I wanted to be,...

    but maybe for your question, there's no place with as much "Opportunity," to do whatever you want
    well, if you're an outdoors guy anyway,..

    the Opportunities to make it, working outside, and independently, are staggering
    and in my opinion, tho it is a little more complicated than it used to be

    I still think it's far better that way than anywhere else I've been, and,
    I should add, "Serious, Quality of Life"
    Ten Hours in that little raft off the AK peninsula, blowin' NW 60, in November.... "the Power of Life and Death is in the Tongue," and Yes, God is Good !

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    Member Akheloce's Avatar
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    I moved here as soon as I was legally allowed to move where I wanted. My only regret is not being born 20 years earlier. I would do it again in a heartbeat, especially with the lessons I've learned in the meantime.
    ΜΟΛΩΝ ΛΑΒΕ

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    Member Derby06's Avatar
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    Yes I would do it again.
    Why; I think there is a better quality of life and opportunities (work) like kodiak said. I have lived alot of places thru my military career and like it here.
    Yea we still have some congestion and 'rush hour traffic' for the Anchorage commuters, but it is no where close to any other larrge metropolition or city.
    So many threads where folks want to move here thinking Alaska is all desolate and live off the land free like its the wild wild west. Though its been pointed out time and time again its not that way, there is still something about being here. It seems when hard times hit the Lower 48 it hits here later and its not as drastic; maybe we're just prepared knowing its headed this way so it alleviates us getting the suprise folks in the Lower 48 had.
    I miss the lower 48 deer hunting though.

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    Member hunterdave's Avatar
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    Thank you all for your replies. It is fascinating to me to hear how you ended up in Ak. I love this state more than words can express. It has gotten into me and it has gotten to the point that where vacationing simply doesnt cut it anymore. my whole family feels the same especially my parents. I am just seriously concerned about making the move and finding work. I own a landscaping company here and hope to do something similar but i have no interest in living in anchorage. Coming up again in august and i might take a day to check around for some work leads.
    to everyone ,
    thanks again
    Andy


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    I'm with you Andy. My wife and kids and I spend as much time up there as possible. I have been in Western Washington my whole life, and love it, but I feel more at home in Alaska than I do anywhere else in world. We've been talking about making the move for a few years now but like you, have found that the job market can be very challenging. So, until that day comes we simply take the best from both worlds; enjoy the home, family, and friends where we are, and escape to our home away from home every chance we get... Scott.

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    Member Rope's Avatar
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    I have been here 6 months, and the family and i have found our home, came here with my work, and can't imagine leaving.

    Go for it.

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    Moderator Paul H's Avatar
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    We've been up here 16 years. I've visited a few other areas but as far as quality of life and opportunities, I can't think of a better place to live or raise a family. If I could, I'd be moving there.

    Is it perfect, nope. Is it expensive, yup. But I still believe it is one of the best locations in the country where someone who is resourceful and hard working can be successful. The biggest catch 22 is where you'd like to live vs. where you can find work. As I've heard someone opine, Alaska is expensive because it's worth it. I think he pretty much nailed it.
    Those that are successful in Alaska are those who are flexible, and allow the reality of life in Alaska to shape their dreams, vs. trying to force their dreams on the reality of Alaska.

    If you have a tenuous grasp of reality, Alaska is not for you.

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    After living up here for 30 years, I'd still say I'd do it again. I loved raising my kids up here, and at the time the grammar school they went to was considered the best in the state. I just loved the idea of them being raised a "small town", "country living" type lifestyle as opposed to ANY city type living. Yes it was tough for awhile, but I'd have to say that AK. has been good to me.

    If there was one thing that I would rethink before moving to AK., had I known back then, would be how much do I want to maintain a good/close relationship with the rest of my family? At the time I moved here it wasn't even a consideration. Not because I didn't love them or want to be able to see them from time to time, but because I just never dreamed that they wouldn't make the time to come visit me. I guess I just thought that anybody would relish the chance at coming to visit AK. Not true I guess. Before I left the lower 48 my sister and I were very close. We talked quite often on the phone, and I had made the trip down there to visit a number of times. But in the 30 years she has been here a total of 2 times. Once was a couple day visit when she came to see my father, and sadly, the last was when he died. My two nieces have never been here. Now my sis and I haven't even talked on the phone for a couple years, and I really don't know why.

    My mother is now getting pretty old and her health is failing. Here again, other than the one trip she made up here, the only time we would see each other were the times I went down there. At least we still talk on the phone, but it's still hard not to be there for her.

    Anyway, if you have family that you love in the lower 48, don't assume you will still see them a lot, or even as much as you would like to. I guess I made that mistake, and over the years I guess it has now become somewhat of a problem. To many of us family is everything. Just understand that when you move 3-5 thousand miles away from them, it will do "something" to the relationship. At least it did mine, it saddens me, and I never really ever saw it coming.....

    Good luck......
    Sheep hunting...... the pain goes away, but the stupidity remains...!!!

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    Member power drifter's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 4merguide View Post
    After living up here for 30 years, I'd still say I'd do it again. I loved raising my kids up here, and at the time the grammar school they went to was considered the best in the state. I just loved the idea of them being raised a "small town", "country living" type lifestyle as opposed to ANY city type living. Yes it was tough for awhile, but I'd have to say that AK. has been good to me.

    If there was one thing that I would rethink before moving to AK., had I known back then, would be how much do I want to maintain a good/close relationship with the rest of my family? At the time I moved here it wasn't even a consideration. Not because I didn't love them or want to be able to see them from time to time, but because I just never dreamed that they wouldn't make the time to come visit me. I guess I just thought that anybody would relish the chance at coming to visit AK. Not true I guess. Before I left the lower 48 my sister and I were very close. We talked quite often on the phone, and I had made the trip down there to visit a number of times. But in the 30 years she has been here a total of 2 times. Once was a couple day visit when she came to see my father, and sadly, the last was when he died. My two nieces have never been here. Now my sis and I haven't even talked on the phone for a couple years, and I really don't know why.

    My mother is now getting pretty old and her health is failing. Here again, other than the one trip she made up here, the only time we would see each other were the times I went down there. At least we still talk on the phone, but it's still hard not to be there for her.

    Anyway, if you have family that you love in the lower 48, don't assume you will still see them a lot, or even as much as you would like to. I guess I made that mistake, and over the years I guess it has now become somewhat of a problem. To many of us family is everything. Just understand that when you move 3-5 thousand miles away from them, it will do "something" to the relationship. At least it did mine, it saddens me, and I never really ever saw it coming.....

    Good luck......
    I hear you as that is how it turns out over the 30 years for me also. My folks did drive up 3 times over time and I started to go back more often as they got old. They are both gone now and I sure would like to have spent a bit more time with my Dad in his wood shop. It does feel kind of like a one way street but if I where you I'd go back and spend some more time with mom and family while you can. Alaska will still be here but our folks won't be.

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    Member hunterdave's Avatar
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    I am 35 years old and the beauty of our situation is that my parents who are 65 and 70 will be moving with us. they travel there with us every time and cant wait to move. We are not very close with our other relatives save a few. It is still a huge decision but we believe ultimately it will be one of the best we have ever made. I am an outdoor fanatic who lives to hunt and then fish. Here in Wisconsin our property taxes and fuel costs are almost the same as those in south central so we know what we are in for it is the job situation that scares us. My wife is currently getting her masters in psychology and i have always been a blue collar guy. I think it will be fine as long as she gets a decent job with benefits. We would sorely miss our friends but most of them have the means to come visit,no doubt during moose season!


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    Member kodiakrain's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 4merguide View Post
    ,....
    Anyway, if you have family that you love in the lower 48, don't assume you will still see them a lot,....
    Just understand that when you move 3-5 thousand miles away from them, it will do "something" to the relationship. At least it did mine, it saddens me, and I never really ever saw it coming.....

    Good luck......
    This is a "Spot On," reality, that I think should be considered also

    Happened exactly the same for me, I left months after HS Graduation,...not even thinking, that my Sisters, born in AK
    would not be eager to come up to visit,...never imagined it would only happen a couple times in all the time I've been here

    My youngest sister followed me up a few years after I came up, she also never went back,...lives in the Valley now
    but the other two, I was quite close to, have found it understandably hard to, "Just shoot on up to Alaska"

    The reality is that it is a huge expense, especially for a family,..like a once in a lifetime trip for many

    My M&D have come up a lot, because my Dad has access to Airline Employee Passes,...
    but as far as working with Dad, in his woodshop,...or stopping over when they are aging, to help out around their home
    stuff that a son should be able to do,...you just miss out on all that stuff,...and they do also
    Nope, it's completely different living so far away

    That really is a consideration, I nearly totally missed out on my Nephews and Nieces lives,...which I realize now, was my loss
    as well as theirs,...
    but that's part of the distance,....it's just too expensive, I guess,...

    Good Point 4merguide, everybody should think that through a little
    Ten Hours in that little raft off the AK peninsula, blowin' NW 60, in November.... "the Power of Life and Death is in the Tongue," and Yes, God is Good !

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    Moderator LuJon's Avatar
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    I talk to my folks regularly on the phone but I haven't heard from my sis in a couple years. My parents have been "coming up next summer" for the last 5 years running. I love Alaska but I am not like some "hell or high water" Alaskans. Alaska will always be home but I would leave to find work before I would go on assistance. I have already spent several years out of state (and country) to make ends meet and build needed experience.

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    I really enjoyed living in Alaska for about the first 30 years. Fantastic place to raise and educate my son concerning the outdoors, hunting and fishing. The last 5 years seemed to be a burden as winters became more frustrating combined with medicore weather in the summer. We just recently moved out and our son wanted to leave even worse than we did. Always encouraged him to find the place to live where he will be the happiest.
    I've shot enough moose, bears, caribou, deer, sheep, etc to last me a lifetime so the hunting will not be missed. We will miss the fishing and plan on returning in a few years and enjoying a month or two every summer on the Kenai and Cook Inlet. We will not miss the high prices or the long winters.

    I say life is short and if you want to move to a new place do it. It is a big USA out there and fun to explore new areas and things to do. Looking forward to shooting a few elk, mule deer, and pronghorns in the next few years. I wouldnt of traded my time in Alaska for anything.
    Tennessee

  20. #20

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    My wife and I struggled with the decision to leave AK. We wanted to stay there when she retired from the military. The cost of living was the ultimate deciding factor. We wanted choices, and with that, the ability to have a flexible work arrangement and not have to rely on a retirement income to scrape-by. Housing was the killer. We could not find housing that met our needs and would not break our pocketbook beyond our means.

    We both enjoyed our time in AK, and saw some things that we would never see in the lower 48. We have freinds we visit now-and-then, but moving back would be a stretch at this point.

    Good luck and have fun.
    “You touch my junk, I'm going to have you arrested.” - Groping objector

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