SUNDAY COFFEE WITH JEB



Seniors Find Adventure in Mountain Village, Alaska

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Mountain Village, elevation 16 feet, is the 4th largest city in Wade Hampton Census Area, Alaska, with a population of 827 hearty residents. Seniors will find Mountain Village on the mighty Yukon River near the Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta.

Mountain Village, 20 miles west of St. Mary’s, is a small Eskimo-Yup’ik village of approximately 700 inhabitants that manages to keep a relatively low profile and seldom does it make the urban newspapers. Cities near Mountain Village include Pitkas Point, St. Marys and Wade Hampton.

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The seasonal economy is based on fishing and subsistence. There are few full-time jobs, with the majority of employers being the City, school district, government, and native corporation. The Zip Code is 99632.

Seniors Find Town Accessible By River

The history books tell us that Mountain Village was first established with the opening of a general store in 1908. Prior to that it had only been a summer fishing camp. Local lore attributes the founding of Mountain Village to a Yup’ik man by the name of Chekohak.

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The original name of the village was Asa’carsarmiut, which means “beginning of the mountains to the north and to the south,” a reference to the 500 ft Azachorok Mountain that rises above the village.

This mountain, though nowhere near as massive as anything in the Alaska Range, was the first mountain encountered by those traveling up the lower Yukon River. That’s life in and around Mountain Village, an adventure as seniors discover.

The climate is primarily continental with temperatures that range from -44 to 80 °F and an annual precipitation of about 16 inches, with snowfall of 44 inches. The village is accessible by riverboat or barge from mid-June to October, and has summer road access to Pitka’s Point, Andreafsky and St. Mary’s.

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 Seniors Enjoy Beauty All Around

After the village was established in 1908, residents of Liberty Landing and Johnny’s Place immigrated to the area and a Covenant Church missionary school was built. In 1923, a post office was built, and since it was a fishing village, a salmon saltery was opened in 1956 and a cannery in 1964. Today the village is home to the Stivers, who are part of the Lower Yukon School District. Scenic beauty abounds in all directions.

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Jana outlines her journey as a new teacher to Mountain Village, a Yu’pik Eskimo village, with some neat photos. Her blog archive is filled with personal experiences including a moose hunting adventure.

Topix notes that modern conveniences like cellphones and the Internet increasingly make living in rural Alaska less rural and decidedly more intriguing. With small villages scattered across the largest state connected by frozen roads and air travel, Alaskans are innovative in many ways and seniors will feel welcomed in Mountain Village.

Senior travelers can fly into Mountain Village and there are several hotels. If you are “up for a travel bucket adventure,” Mountain Village awaits your arrival.  Enjoy your trip. -jeb

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