|March 6-17, 2008 Arctic Circle Aurora Trip
We made this trip with Elder Hostel. The first four nights we stayed in Fairbanks where we attended lectures at the
University of Alaska on the Aurora and other subjects, attended the dog sled races, and went to the winter carnival to
see the ice sculptures. The next five nights we stayed in Coldfoot which is 75 miles above the Arctic Circle on the Dalton
Highway. We had a magnificent trip to Coldfoot by van up the Dalton Highway. We were kept quite busy in Coldfoot
where the most interesting event was the Aurora. On our fourth day in Coldfoot, the van took us another 75 miles north
to the North Slope. We spent our last full day in Fairbanks watching sled races and attending the fur auction.
Below are links to pictures and narratives of our trip. I have arranged the trip by subject matter, giving first preference to
the subjects that I found most interesting starting with the aurora. At the end of each page, there is a link to the next
page, or you may click the individual links below to go to the subjects that interest you.
The most spectacular part of the trip was seeing the Aurora
which performed spectacularly for us at Coldfoot which is above
the Arctic Circle.
The Dalton Highway was built in the seventies for the
construction of the Alaska Pipeline. It was a spectacular
winter journey over one of the most dangerous highways in
the world, all the way to the Arctic Circle and then on to
Coldfoot, and one day on up to the North Slope.
On our drive north, we saw Ptarmigan, Dall Sheep,
Caribou, and Moose.
In Fairbanks, we went to the Winter Carnival where we saw
magnificent ice sculptures.
We attended the dog sled races in Fairbanks and went
dog sledding in Coldfoot.
We visit Wiseman, population 21, a gold mining
town founded in 1919.
This trip was made possible by Elder Hostel.
Normally, we try to avoid group trips, but this was an exception and a most worthwhile exception.
The price was very reasonable for where we were and where we went. The co-ordinators, Kathleen and Paula, were terrific.
The guides and staff in Coldfoot busted their you know whats to make our trip memorable. The food was very good and
ample. Our fellow travellers were enthusiastic. The trip was packed with activities and lectures. Activities continued form
morning into the evening and into the night for the Aurora. Many of the activities afforded us the opportunity to go out on
our own. Finally, so long as you bring adequate warm clothes, this is a trip anyone can do. (It seemed to me that some
people did not bring adequate clothing and accordingly were limited in the time they could spend viewing the aurora.)
Several of the people on the trip were handicapped but were able to enjoy most of the activities.
I highly recommend this trip which takes place annually in March.