Guest Author - Dawn Engler
Nome Alaska is located on the southwestern edge of the Seward Peninsula, along the Norton Sound. In the winter, yes, it’s very cold, snowy, and icy. But, they need all of that to host the finish of the Iditarod Sled Dog Race in March each year. The “Mardis Gras of the North”, hosts tournaments, art and craft shows, and races for the locals and more than 1000 visitors each year leading up to the race finish. If you are thinking about attending, book at least a year in advance!
Other winter activities include helicopter sightseeing, sled dog mushing, cross country skiing, snowshoeing, and how about some fun aboard a snow-tracked vehicle touring the frozen north looking for musk ox! This would definitely be on my list!
Summer time boasts all the normal summer activities you would expect and more. Some ideas for you are swimming in the hot springs, walking the beaches, fishing, camping, panning for gold, and birding. Nome is another hot spot for over 150 migrating species that return each year to breeding areas. Nome has ocean, wetland and high-alpine tundra habitats and May to June is the best timing for viewing. If you need a Long-tailed Jaeger or a Bristled-thighed Curlew for your life list, they can be spotted here.
Cruise tours of the Bering Strait, an area that used to be known as the Ice Curtain because of its location between the United States and Russia, can be accessed through Nome. Or how about following the path of Roald Amundsen through the great Northwest Passage aboard the MS Hanseatic of the Hapag-Lloyd Cruise Lines? You can cruise along while in total comfort and imagine the hardships of these vessels during the late 1800’s, early 1900’s.
Nome’s Eskimo Community includes Central Yupik, Inupiaq, St. Lawrence Island Yupik and American Indians. Nome’s population was over 10,000 in 1899 when gold was discovered and the stampede moved here from the Klondike. A little tidbit of trivia for you, Wyatt Earp, known for his legacies as a frontiersman, lawman, gambler and prospector, operated the Dexter Saloon in Nome in 1897, during the heyday of the Alaskan gold rush!
Things to do, see, and take part in, await you in Nome, Alaska. There are daily flights in and out of the airport. Overnight accommodations can be found in private owned apartments, or bed and breakfasts. Vehicle rentals allow exploring the miles of roadways around Nome and many lead to outlying communities. “There’s No Place Like Nome” is the motto for this great Alaskan community. Go check it out!