Ah, the joys of summer … camping in the great outdoors, basking in the midnight sun, protecting yourself from mosquitoes able to carry off small animals, cleaning up after busloads of tourists and long-haul truckers.
Not your idea for a summer job? Well, you needn’t go yourself. Ted Worcester ‘12 blogs for a second season from Coldfoot Camp, Alaska, a combination tourist lodge and truck stop above the Arctic Circle.
In his blog, While in Alaska, Ted chronicles the challenges and joys of life at one of civilization’s furthest-flung outposts. According to Ted, “This time around, I packed a lot lighter despite the fact that I brought my bike! It hasn’t arrived yet but when it does, I am going to start training on the Dalton Highway. In a sense, the blog this summer will be more of a training log and photo blog.”
Ted describes the camp: “Coldfoot is located on mile 175 of the Dalton Highway, a 414-mile gravel road that runs from Fairbanks to Prudhoe Bay. It is mostly frequented by truckers running supplies from Fairbanks to oil workers drilling in Prudhoe Bay. The journey for these truckers is often arduous due to rough conditions of the road. Imagine an 18 wheeler going 50 miles per hour down a dirt road filled with potholes and unexpected forms of wildlife. Coldfoot itself is 60 miles north of the Arctic Circle and 240 miles below the Arctic Ocean. According to the census, there are 13 permanent residents of Coldfoot. However, hundreds lodge at Coldfoot year round, mostly during the summer season, as they make their trip up the Dalton Highway. As far as infrastructure, there is a hotel, restaurant, satellite internet access, and satellite television. Coldfoot is far from being a Ritz Carlton, in fact the buildings, most of which resemble trailers, are very rudimentary.”
The blog offers some fascinating reading about a most unusual summer job and an interesting young man. It also says something about the ubiquity of modern communications that we can keep up with Ted, even as he explores life in one of the more remote corners of the country.