Alaska: the largest and most sparsely populated U. S. state


Informative Essay by my little Adam 


Alaska became the 49th state of the United States on January 3, 1959.  Alaska, northwest of Canada, is the largest and most sparsely populated U. S. state.  It’s known for its diverse terrain of open spaces, mountains, and forests, with abundant wildlife and many small towns.  Alaska is a perfect destination for outdoor activities, such as skiing, mountain biking, and kayaking.  The Massive Denali National Park is home to Denali (formerly called Mount McKinley) North America’s highest peak.   

The capital of Alaska is Juneau.  In 2016, Alaska had a population of 741,894 people.  Alaska is located in the Northwest extremity of North America with approximated 33% of the state located in the Arctic Circle.  The state motto of Alaska is “North to the Future.” Alaska’s state bird is called the Willow Ptarmigan.  The state tree of Alaska is the Picea Sitchensis, and the state flower is called the Myosotis Alpestris.  Anchorage is Alaska’s largest city with a population of 298,695 residents as of 2015.   

The top-rated 10 tourist attractions in Alaska are: 

  1.  Denali National Park:  One of the largest in the United States and encompasses North America’s highest mountain.  Denali is the 20,320-foot peak’s traditional name, but was dubbed as Mount McKinley.  Denali is the home of grizzly bears, wolves, reindeer, elk, and other animals.  There are more than 167 species of birds.  Admission to the park is $10. 
  1. Tracy Arm Fjord:  Located South of Juneau and is a popular destination for cruise ships and boat tours.  
  1. Kenai Fjords National Park:  Offers some of the best sightseeing in Alaska.  This National Park is home to large brown bears that feed on the fat rich salmon.   
  1. Alaska Highway:  This highway was built for military purposes in 1942, during World War II, in the record time of eight months.  Now it serves as the most important means of access by land to the Yukon Territory and southern Alaska. 
  1. University of Alaska Museum of the North:  Located in Fairbanks, the University of Alaska Museum of the North offers well over one million historical artifacts and natural history pieces.  Admission for adults age 15 and on is $12, and children’s tickets are $7 for children 1-14.   
  1. Inside Passage:  This is the most popular way to visit is to cruise through the fjords on large ships, charter boats, and private yachts, or to stop off the highway at Haines, Skagway, or Hyder.  This section of southeast Alaska offers incredible scenery of glaciers, mountains, and ocean, and is home to an abundance of wildlife.  This area is also inhabited by the Tlingit, Haida, and Tsimshian peoples.  
  1. Northern Lights:  These lights appear during the nights of September to mid-April, and the best time to watch for solar particles in the earth’s magnetic field is after midnight.  
  1. Alaska Native Heritage Center:  Cultural guides demonstrate crafts and artworks and perform dances and songs.  The center is open daily, 9am-5pm, from mid-May to early September.  Admission for adults is $24.95, and the price for children ages 7-16 is $16.95. 
  1. Wrangell-St. Elias National Park:  This national park is Alaska’s largest and most magnificent of Alaska’s sprawling national parks, with nine of the 16 highest peaks in the United States. 
  1.  Iditarod National Historic Trail:  This historic trail consists of a network of trails totaling more than 2,300 miles.  It is best known for the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race.  

Last but not least, here is a list of fun facts about Alaska that you may not know: 

  1. The state of Rhode Island could fit into Alaska 425 times. 
  1. Dog mushing is the official state sport.  
  1. The four-spot skimmer dragonfly is the official state insect.  
  1. The Alaska state flag was designed in 1926 by a 13-year-old named Bennie Benson. 
  1. There are more than 3,000 rivers and 3 million lakes in Alaska.

i found a nice video on youtube you can watch about Alaska :