Alaskan Artist - Elise Tomlinson
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04/05/2005: "Barrow Alaska"

Did I mention that the Alaska Library Association's annual conference this year was in Barrow? Holy Crap. It was -37(F) when the plane landed. I have gone to every conference since becoming a librarian except for this one. The dates were right before my phantom show, so I thought I'd be too busy and stressed out for the 6 days it would take to get there and back again. Several of my co-workers went however, and the posted some images from it at on the conference website.

Looking at the images made me regret not going this year. Everyone that went (from Southeast) had to borrow big fur lined parkas and mukluks for the trip...winters here are super mild.

Yesterday they interviewed a barrow man about the start of this years whale hunt. Seems the whales have been a month early the past 3 years and the pack ice is shrinking so they can no longer haul the whales onto the ice because it isn't thick enough anymore to support the weight.

Replies: 4 Comments

on Wednesday, April 6th, Jackie said

E: Hey - my librarian sister went to Barrow for the conference! Even tho she's retired from UAA, she's still a member of the Alaska Librarians Assoc., and I assume her current employer - Western WA U. - paid her way there. I'd love to go there sometime - the farthest north in Alaska I've been was Circle Hot Springs. The farthest west I've been is the Pribilof Islands.

on Wednesday, April 6th, Elise said

What a small world eh Jackie? Like I said before, if I'd known I wasn't going to have the show April 1st, I would have gone in a heartbeat.

Everyone said it was an excellent conference and for most people, it was there first time to Barrow. I doubt I'll ever have reason to go there again, it's actually really expensive to get there from Juneau.

I've been to Circle, How did you like the Pribilof Islands?

on Wednesday, April 6th,">Jackie said

E: The Pribilofs were beautiful. I was only actually on St. Paul - the bigger of the two. A friend invited me to come visit, so I stayed with her sister and her family. I got to see all the things the tourists can't see, as Eco-Tourism is the island's main source of income, and tourists are strictly 'controlled' by local guides. Most all of the tourists there were birders, from all over the world. I was there in June, and they had record warm weather, it got up into the low 60's. You feel very isolated - especially standing on the beach looking out at the vast empty ocean. Kodiak is at least surrounded by smaller islands, and only 50 minutes from Anchorage by air. St. Paul is 600 miles away from the mainland, I think. The birds and wildflowers were incredible!

on Thursday, April 7th, Elise said

Wow Jackie, that sounds amazing. I would *love* to visit there someday.

One of my best friends here in Alaska is from Unalaska (Dutch Harbor), and I could go there for a visit sometime, which I think would be very cool as well. Damn, Alaska is a big state.