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Posts Tagged ‘Alaska’

It’s been a busy few weeks. I came back from Ottawa late in January, and less than two weeks later I hit the road again to follow the Yukon Quest sled dog race to Fairbanks (by car, not by trail). I’ve been home for a little over a week now, catching up on sleep, email, etc.

Meanwhile, I’ve had a few new pieces published.

My story about surfing in Tofino is in the latest issue of AFAR. It’s available online, but pick up the print version if you can – the photo spread/layout they put together is gorgeous.

For Longreads, I wrote about how The Atlantic’s Ta-Nehisi Coates built a unique and important corner of the internet – in his comments section. It’s Yours: A Short History of The Horde.

My story about the 2015 Yukon Quest, with wonderful photos by Katie Orlinsky, is up online at National Geographic: Survival is the Ultimate Goal in World’s Toughest Sled Dog Race.

Alaska will no longer have bars on its state ferries. I wrote an obituary for them over at Hazlitt.

And my biweekly column for Pacific Standard is now through its second month. They’re all collected here.

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Two things: Earlier this month I had a second story published over at SB Nation Longform. It’s about the centennial of the first ascent of Denali, the tallest mountain in North America, and I got to go to base camp to report it, which was challenging and great. Check it out: The High One.

Second, on Friday night I got word that my Up Here story about Skagway’s seasonal workers – ‘I Found the Sweet Life’ – won the Western Magazine Award for best travel and leisure story. Exciting! Up Here won a second WMA, in profile writing, for my pal Katherine Laidlaw’s story about an activist in Nunavut.

I spent the first week of June in Toronto, at MagNet, Canada’s national magazines conference, where I also attended a handful of journalism-related galas. Up Here Business won best magazine of the year at the Kenneth R. Wilson Awards (honoring the best in professional, trade and B2B mags in Canada), and Up Here won small-circulation mag of the year at the Editors’ Choice Awards. We were nominated in five categories at the National Magazine Awards but came away from that one empty-handed – still an incredible week for a pair of small magazines from the sub-Arctic!

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dutch sunset 1 small

I was a big, big fan of the Aleutians. I hope to get back there again someday.

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espanola booby sunset 1 small
I got home earlier this week from an incredible assignment: a Galapagos cruise with Lindblad Expeditions. I’d heard big things about the islands, and they lived up to the hype. I’ll be writing more about the trip soon – in the meantime, here’s a photo I took of a group of Nazca boobies (cousins of the famous blue-footed boobies) at sunset.

I’ve been home for less than 72 hours, but tomorrow I’m off again, to Anchorage and then the Aleutians, on a three-week reporting trip. I’ll get back to Whitehorse in early May, just in time for the Yukon summer to get rolling.

More stories and photos coming soon!

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My feature in the July/August issue of Up Here is called ‘I Found the Sweet Life’ and it’s about the week I spent living among the seasonal tourism workers of Skagway, AK. It features drinking games, creative use of tarps, and a 200 lb. St. Bernard named Bronco. (It’s not online, but I had a fun time putting it together.)

I’ve also got a feature story in the July issue of Up Here Business, about the changing face of Whitehorse retail and food/drink businesses: Let Them Eat Brunch. Also in that issue, I wrote about the impact of the Parks Canada budget cuts on the Yukon tourism economy, and the arrival of a new Filipino grocery store in town.

Meanwhile, a couple of my shorter pieces from the June issue of UHB are now online: The Perils of Northern Branding is a short business advice column (!) about common Northern business names, and Ship Day in Skagway is about how the businesses in that small port town operate on their own unique daily rhythm.

More to come – the August issue of Up Here Business lands on newsstands this week, and the September issues of both magazines are in the final stages of production.

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This one’s been in the works for awhile. My four-part essay series on traveling Southeast Alaska by state ferry is being published on World Hum throughout this week. Part one, The Roughest Place in the World, went live today.

Check it out, and stay tuned for the rest!

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Hello from Dawson City, where I’m a week into a gig on the communications team for the Yukon Quest 1000-Mile International Sled Dog Race. I’ve been following the race from checkpoint to checkpoint (it started in Fairbanks and will end in Whitehorse), tweeting, updating Facebook, and writing news releases and short race updates for the Quest site.

Having trouble envisioning a 1000-mile dogsledding event? Here’s a fantastic video that my colleagues on the photo/video crew made at the start line:

I’ve written about the Quest before: I had a short essay in the October/November issue of Up Here magazine about my time at the Slaven’s Roadhouse dog drop station last year (unfortunately the piece is not online), and I also wrote my last Vela story about mushing and the Quest.

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