Alaska, the largest state in the USA, is located in the extreme northwest of the American continent and impresses above all with its almost untouched natural landscape.
According to Acronymmonster, Alaska is in the far northwest of North America. The US state extends over 1,717,854 km². Alaska is not only the largest state in the USA in terms of area; With only about 740,000 residents (estimated as of 2017) it has the third smallest proportion of the population and the lowest population density of the states of the USA. The capital Juneau with about 32,000 residents is located in the southeast of the state. In addition to Juneau, Anchorage (291,000 residents) and Fairbanks (31,000 residents) are also among the largest cities in the country. Alaska is known for its continental to subarctic climate with wide tundras, snow, glaciers and mountain landscapes. With the 6,190 meter high Denali, Alaska is the highest mountain in North America.
The Russian history of Alaska
Alaska has a history of some territorial changes. The US state, nicknamed Last Frontier, translated: last frontier, was settled about 35,000 years ago. At that time there was still a land bridge between Alaska and today’s Siberia, which enabled the indigenous people to wander between the regions. In fact, the first European settlers in Alaska came from Russia. The first settlement was established around 1784 at Three Saints Bay. As a result of this Russian settlement, the region became what is known as Russian America, which was of great economic importance for the Russian Empire of that time.
Alaska as a US state
In the second half of the 19th century, the important economic asset of sea otter pelts was drastically reduced due to systematic hunting, and because of the expensive Crimean War (1853 to 1856) the new territory was increasingly difficult to maintain economically. Today’s Alaska passed into the possession of the United States on March 30, 1867 for the equivalent of 7.2 million US dollars.
The nature reserves in the north of the USA
Today Alaska is one of the 50 US states. In addition to the numerous oil and wood reserves, tourism is also an important factor for the territory in the north of the USA. Alaska is known for its vast, pristine wilderness. About two thirds of the country are parts of extensive nature reserves. The state’s major national parks include Denali National Park, Glacier Bay National Park, and Kenai Fjords National Park.
Largest Counties in Alaska by Area
According to Countryaah, the biggest counties in Alaska are listed as below:
|1||Unorganized Borough||764,443 km2|
|2||North Slope Borough||230,053 km2|
|3||Northwest Arctic Borough||92,369 km2|
|4||Matanuska-Susitna Borough||64,012 km2|
|5||Lake and Peninsula Borough||61,914 km2|
|6||Kenai Peninsula Borough||41,499 km2|
|7||Denali Borough||32,730 km2|
|9||Fairbanks North Star Borough||18,998 km2|
|10||Aleutians East Borough||18,091 km2|
|11||Kodiak Island Borough||17,133 km2|
|12||Ketchikan Gateway Borough||12,580 km2|
|13||Petersburg Borough||7,514 km2|
|17||Haines Borough||6,074 km2|
|19||Bristol Bay Borough||1,248 km2|
Cape Krusenstern National Monument
To the north of the Arctic Circle is the Cape Krusenstern, which was declared a national monument in 1978. It is an important archaeological site where the remains of more than 4,000 years of old settlement have been found. The area thus attracts many naturalists, historians and archaeologists who study life many centuries ago.
There is a monument commemorating the gold rush that peaked here in 1898. Cape Krusenstern is one of the other areas of untouched Alaskan nature covering an area of 262,828 hectares. This area has become home to countless species of wild animals, such as brown and grizzly bears, wolves, wolverines, moose, reindeer, caribou, muskrats, hares, foxes and Dalla sheep. You can also see bearded seals, which are the largest of the Arctic seals and can weigh up to 800 kg.
Like other parts of Alaska, Cape Krusenstern is rich in natural resources. The landscape is largely made up of grass tundra. The flat coast is dotted with vast lagoons, around which rise low limestone hills. At higher altitudes we find shrubs and lichens. The highest point is Mt. Noak. The area is also interwoven with a number of rivers that are very rich in fish, attracting fishermen from all over America. The reserve protects unique plant and animal species and tries to preserve their natural environment in its original and untouched form. Here you can taste the real wild Alaska first hand.
Lovers of history, fishing, hiking, as well as rafting and kayaking will enjoy themselves here. However, there are no official trails, so be equipped with a map, compass or navigation. In any case, always report to the rangers where you are going to avoid problems when you get lost, for example. Don’t forget about quality waterproof clothes and shoes.