Winter Camping in Alaska

My favorite part of growing up in Alaska is all of the outdoor experiences I've been exposed to. My first winter camping experience was at Angel Rocks, just northeast of Fairbanks. I was 11 years old and it was about -25°F not including wind chill. I went with a number of friends who were in Boy Scouts with me at the time as well as their dads. Not knowing what to bring on the trip, I decided I'd pack anything I thought I might need during the overnight trip. My pack probably weighed between 35 and 40 pounds (which was just under a third of my body weight at the time). It took a while to hike the mile and a half trail up to the rocks where we were going to be spending the night and once we got to the top, the sun was down, the wind was blowing, and we were getting cold. That was the camping trip I learned about hot tang and how great and easy it is to warm up your core.

Many winter camping trips later, I get together with some friends and head south to an area near Healy, AK called Suntrana Creek. I think it was early March or late February, so the creek wasn't flowing. It was mostly just a little divot where water normally is during the warmer months. We camped right near the cars so we didn't have to haul any gear anywhere. This allowed us to spend most of the next day hiking up and down the ridge and climbing around on some sweet rocks. I even found a fossil! My friends and I recorded a few videos during this trip with a helmet cam we named Hank. One of the videos is from the morning, one from the hike up the ridge, and another of us on our way down. I'm so glad we brought along Hank so we can experience that awesome camping trip again and again. It's a lot of fun to see how we've grown, both physically and maturity-wise. 

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