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mommadeb
November 1st, 2015, 04:13 PM
Has anyone on here ever lived in Alaska or knew someone that did? DH and I are contemplating a move back to the States in the next 1-2 years and we do not want to live in a big city or in the cornfields (where I'm from). Basically, no where in the States really appeals to us other than Alaska or up around Grand Marais, Minnesota or Canada somewhere. We are possibly looking around the Homer, Alaska area.

Any input-good or bad? Ideas. Advice? Where to start? I'm doing a lot of researching on the internet too.

Thanks.


120393
(This is our weather now, so any of the above places would be ok)

JCY
November 1st, 2015, 04:21 PM
When my son was in the Air Force, he & his wife lived in Alaska for 3 yrs. They lived in Anchorage. I visited them in July. Long daylight in the summer, long darkness in the winter & lots of snow. I think it all depends on what you're looking for & the type of job(s) you have. There are many beautiful places to live in the Lower 48. I'm sure you can get a lot of info. on the internet.

mommadeb
November 1st, 2015, 04:42 PM
JCY-we have the strange daylight/night hours too as we live in Iceland. Our latitude is actually farther north than Homer's. My husband will be retiring and I work in fish processing.

Hulamoon
November 1st, 2015, 05:37 PM
I haven't, but wanted to suggest Bellingham Washington. I had a friend move up there. Looks really nice.

shirleyknot
November 1st, 2015, 05:39 PM
A woman I went to school with lives near Juno, has been there for 30 years. We went to high school in Iowa, and she tells me its actually nicer in Juno, as far as cold.

DeniseSm
November 1st, 2015, 05:46 PM
My DH grew up in Alaska but moved to Texas. If you want the charm of Alaska without the extreme isolation try Victoria BC, Canada or Jasper Canada. Victoria will have fish processing, while Jasper being inland will not.

There are some lovely places in Minnesota and Maine since you are used to the winters.

Lori63
November 1st, 2015, 06:59 PM
We have friends that live in Juneau and they love it. They are lucky, they actually live in the city but have two cabins, one up a river accessible only by float plane or boat and one cabin on a nearby island accessible only by boat. So they get away from the city all the time.

We visited in the summer and I enjoyed it very much, not sure I would survive a winter there, but then again, I'm a wimp. Good luck with whatever you decide.

Monique
November 1st, 2015, 07:11 PM
My DH grew up in Alaska but moved to Texas. If you want the charm of Alaska without the extreme isolation try Victoria BC, Canada or Jasper Canada. Victoria will have fish processing, while Jasper being inland will not.

There are some lovely places in Minnesota and Maine since you are used to the winters.

Yes, Canada is good, although I have never been out west YET!!

Juliet Taylor
November 1st, 2015, 07:52 PM
I don't have a suggestion, sorry, but I can tell you that when I feel overwhelmed I think I want to move to Alaska. So... :D

RosieMS
November 1st, 2015, 08:02 PM
I wouldn't mind the snow, but I would mind the dark. A very good friend lives in Minnesota, they head south several times during the winter. I love love Maine.

Grandma Nan
November 1st, 2015, 10:27 PM
Canada certainly has spots where the climate could be comparable to Iceland. Victoria, BC is beautiful but very mild and has little to no snow during the winter. The whole of Vancouver Island is exceptionally beautiful with fish processing. We easterners consider it to be the tropical area of Canada.

Good luck on making a decision. It must be difficult.

CraftyJnet
November 1st, 2015, 11:10 PM
NPR just published this about Alaska: Steep Hikes In Insurance Rates Force Alaskans To Make Tough Choices : Shots - Health News : NPR (http://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2015/10/30/452824494/steep-hikes-in-insurance-rates-force-alaskans-to-make-tough-choices?utm_source=facebook.com&utm_medium=social&utm_campaign=npr&utm_term=nprnews&utm_content=202601)

Steep Hikes In Insurance Rates Force Alaskans To Make Tough Choices : Shots - Health News : NPR (http://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2015/10/30/452824494/steep-hikes-in-insurance-rates-force-alaskans-to-make-tough-choices?utm_source=facebook.com&utm_medium=social&utm_campaign=npr&utm_term=nprnews&utm_content=202601)

BobW
November 2nd, 2015, 01:50 AM
Has anyone on here ever lived in Alaska or knew someone that did? DH and I are contemplating a move back to the States in the next 1-2 years and we do not want to live in a big city or in the cornfields (where I'm from). Basically, no where in the States really appeals to us other than Alaska or up around Grand Marais, Minnesota or Canada somewhere. We are possibly looking around the Homer, Alaska area.

Any input-good or bad? Ideas. Advice? Where to start? I'm doing a lot of researching on the internet too.

Thanks.


120393
(This is our weather now, so any of the above places would be ok)

My step-daughter has lived in and around Anchorage Alaska since October, 1993. There are some very nice smaller communities not far from Anchorage. The temperature doesn't get any colder than what we do here in Central Missouri, it's just that when it gets cold there it stays cold. When we get snow it is here for a day or two then melts off because the temp gets warmer and the sun comes out. They get snow and it stays on the ground instead of melting.

She loves it. She has retired (mandatory retirement at 55) and is maintaining her home there and has bought a home at Lake of the Ozarks here in Missouri. She spends Winter and Summer in Alaska and Spring and Fall in Missouri.

Her mother and I made six trips to Alaska to visit. It is a beautiful state. I am not a hunting/fishing enthusiast, but I was never bored or at a loss of enjoyable activities when there.

mommadeb
November 2nd, 2015, 01:57 PM
Wow! Good 'ol ACA.

Is it hard to immigrate to Canada?


NPR just published this about Alaska: Steep Hikes In Insurance Rates Force Alaskans To Make Tough Choices : Shots - Health News : NPR (http://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2015/10/30/452824494/steep-hikes-in-insurance-rates-force-alaskans-to-make-tough-choices?utm_source=facebook.com&utm_medium=social&utm_campaign=npr&utm_term=nprnews&utm_content=202601)

Steep Hikes In Insurance Rates Force Alaskans To Make Tough Choices : Shots - Health News : NPR (http://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2015/10/30/452824494/steep-hikes-in-insurance-rates-force-alaskans-to-make-tough-choices?utm_source=facebook.com&utm_medium=social&utm_campaign=npr&utm_term=nprnews&utm_content=202601)

Hulamoon
November 2nd, 2015, 02:13 PM
Wow! Good 'ol ACA.

Is it hard to immigrate to Canada?

I was going to ask the same thing. I wanted to move to New Zealad for awhile and they sure don't make it easy. That was along time ago though. Before kids. lol

Lightwriter
November 2nd, 2015, 07:58 PM
DD married a man who was born in Alaska and grew up there. He lived in Fairbanks. Fairbanks is basically a desert...it can get somewhat warm in the summer, but sometimes gets to -40 in the winter.

DD lived there 3 1/2 years. She lived in Anchorage. The winters are a little warmer there but there is a lot of snow. The last year she lived there they had a record total snowfall of 136 inches.

DD's mother-in-law and her Mom and sister live in Homer. It is very quaint. I have not been there, but seen pictures and heard them talk of it. Some houses have inside bathrooms; some are cabins with outhouses. It is on the very tip end of Alaska.

If you want more info on Homer, send me a PM and I will see if my contacts in Homer will talk to you re: email.

Bjvarizona
November 3rd, 2015, 02:21 AM
I lived in Alaska for 28 years, raised four kids there, 10 years in Fairbanks and 18 in Anchorage. DH and I left in 1999 due to my job. It is like living anywhere, just longer winters, but fantastic people. Think Wasilla for close to Anchorage, or Eagle River. Just keep in mind that to travel anywhere is several hours just to get out of the state via air. Several days to drive. And it's more expensive to live. The house we bought in Anchorage in 1980 for $125,000 is currently on the market for $350,000. That is in mid-town Anchorage. We sold when we left for $179,000. Produce and milk are expensive as that is flown in but other food is probably 15% higher than the lower 48 states. I would not trade the experience for anything but am glad to not have the winters now that I am in my 70's. Just visited friends in both cities this past summer.

jjkaiser
November 3rd, 2015, 02:43 AM
Oh to live in Nantucket! So quaint, so old, and so beautiful. My favorite vacation spot. It might be bad during tourist season though. Or I should say crowded, not bad! Sorry though. Obviously it isn't anywhere near Alaska

traildancer
November 3rd, 2015, 04:24 PM
I was born and raised in AK and all my family still live up there in various parts.

We lived outside of Palmer, in the Matanuska Valley where the HUGE cabbages grow. Palmer is about 50 miles from Anchorage. The Valley has fairly temperate weather year-round, in that it is not extremely warm nor extremely cold. Well, actually no place in AK is ever extremely warm!!! The Mat Valley does have a lot of wind. It is very dry if you are not in Southeast AK. The winters are clear and cold. I don't remember it getting colder than -20 but with the sun shining it didn't seem that cold. And, of course, we were dressed for the weather. I used to ride my horses back and forth to visit friends and we drove SkiDoos all over the place. If you live there, you adjust.

If darkness bothers you, there is a lot of darkness for a seemingly long time. I remember getting on the bus in the dark and getting off the bus in the dark in the winter. Feeding and watering horses in the dark, etc. But, again, if you live there, you adjust. It was all I knew as I had grown up there. Now, it would be hard to go back. I currently live in OR.

But------the summers were grand. In Fairbanks they have softball tournaments on June 21 where they play all night long. We would ride our horses late, late, late in the summer because the sun would still be shining at 11p. We have a video from commercial fishing in Bristol Bay where my husband filmed his watch with only the ambient light and it was 2 in the morning or some such awful hour. One fishes when the tide runs. And you can actually read the numbers on the watch. You have to be careful that you do go to bed because if you wait for the night, it doesn't come for several months.

The scenery is beautiful. There is world-class hunting and fishing. Hiking, camping, skiing. All the same things one would do anywhere. Distance is a big consideration. Everything is a long way from everything else. Also there are very few highways. In college in Indiana, my friend and I would laugh because that state has county roads with numbers and we could name every highway in our state. So if you want to travel off the road system, you fly or go by boat. But it is vast and magnificent and beautiful.

shirleyknot
November 6th, 2015, 12:37 PM
How much Alaska do you want?

http://www.nytimes.com/2015/11/08/travel/alaska-dalton-highway.html

Lilly
November 7th, 2015, 09:02 PM
Of course I vote Minnesota - And I've always thought I'd retire to Grand Marais. Nowhere more beautiful in my mind. Of course you have the ginormous mosquitos that almost carry you away - but you are used to that. And unlike Alaska the days in MN are not nearly so short in the winter. Grand Marais is such a sweet little town and I love the people. We just this week bought a winter home near Phoenix but MN is where my heart will always be,

SewMuchToDo
November 10th, 2015, 12:29 AM
I live in Kodiak and it's nice and very beautiful here. A bit pricey on rent/martgages and you have to fly to get off island or take the 12 hour ferry. We do have some of the regular issues everyone else is having with drug abuse but we have a great police department that is very active.

mommadeb
November 10th, 2015, 11:34 AM
Congrats on your winter home! I too would not mind living in Grand Marais, but I need to work and I just don't know what is available up there for me. My husband will be retired.

I would consider it if I could find work up there though!

Deb


Of course I vote Minnesota - And I've always thought I'd retire to Grand Marais. Nowhere more beautiful in my mind. Of course you have the ginormous mosquitos that almost carry you away - but you are used to that. And unlike Alaska the days in MN are not nearly so short in the winter. Grand Marais is such a sweet little town and I love the people. We just this week bought a winter home near Phoenix but MN is where my heart will always be,