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The Alaska Homesteader's Handbook: Independent Living on the Last Frontier

by and

The Alaska Homesteader's Handbook: Independent Living on the Last Frontier Cover

ISBN13: 9780882408118
ISBN10: 0882408119
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Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

A remarkable compilation of practical information for living in one of the most impractical and inhospitable landscapes in the United States. More than forty pioneer types ranging from their mid-nineties to mid-twenties describe their reasons for choosing to live their lives in Alaska and offer useful instructions and advice that made that life more livable. Whether it be how to live among bears, build an outhouse, cross a river, or make birch syrup, each story gives readers a window to a life most will never know but many still dream about. Fifty photographs and 150 line drawings illustrate the real-life experiences of Alaska settlers such as 1930s New Deal colonists, de-mobilized military who stayed after World War II, dream-seekers from the 60s and 70s, and myriad others who staked their claim in Alaska.

About the Author

A former writer and editor for the Fairbanks Daily News-Miner, the Anchorage Daily News, and Alaska magazine, Tricia Brown has spent more than thirty years traveling nearly every inch of Alaska's road system and flying into the bush to write about the state and its people. She has published numerous books on Alaska for adults and for children, including the critically acclaimed Children of the Midnight Sun, Wild Alaska, and Fairbanks: Alaska's Heart of Gold. She and her husband make their home in Oregon when not exploring the 49th state.

Originally from Tennessee, Nancy Gates came to Alaska as a young wife and mother of two small boys in 1978. The family, eventually expanding to include six children, and she has lived in various cities within Alaska over the past 33 years including Anchorage, Seward, Juneau, Ketchikan and Palmer. Nancy enjoys writing about what she enjoys living — family life among the extraordinary people in the Last Frontier. Her essays have appeared in various collections and magazines including We Alaskans, ALASKA Magazine and the Cup of Comfort anthologies. One of her feature articles earned Honorable Mention in the 71st Annual Writer’s Digest Writing Competition. Nancy also enjoys contributing, editing, writing and updating travel books such as Alaska’s Best Places, Discovery Travel Adventures Alaskan Wilderness, Insight Guides Alaska, Berlitz Pocket Guide for Alaska, and the Alaska Almanac.

Table of Contents


How to skin a caribou

How to bake bread (with recipe)

How to build an outhouse

How to smoke fish (with recipe)

How to build a cold-frame

How to walk in snowshoes

How to make the most of your water

How to build a campfire

How to keep moose out of the garden

How to store winter vegetables

How to repair a fishing net

How to notch a log

How to harness a dog team

How to catch a king salmon (with recipe)

How to adjust the woodstove flue

How to keep your sourdough alive (with recipe)

How to pan for gold

How to brew tundra tea

How to make zucchini bread (with recipe)

How to grow a 60-pound cabbage

How to sharpen an ax

How to patch a leaky boat

How to build an outdoor shower

How to press wildflowers

How to paddle a canoe

How to load a packhorse

How to winterize your car

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 2 comments:

dylan johns, February 27, 2013 (view all comments by dylan johns)
From a person who pre-ordered the book with excited anticipation of what stories lied within, I was very disappointed after and giving it a quick read (and quick does not describe a casual attitude of engagement)- This book is rather simplistic in both the stories about life as a homesteader and the information provided, falling incompletely between a narrative and reference. For the most part, each person's story is told and their tip provided on two facing pages of the book, which by nature does not provide much room for enlightenment. Half of the narrative tends to describe the person's family members and how they wound up in Alaska, rather than discussing what life living in Alaska is like. This would be fine to an extent, however this is generally repeated for most of the people showcased in the book and not what I expected to find. As someone who has been building a library of helpful reference books, I would strongly recommend the Country Wisdom and Know how series as a starting point.
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Joanne Haley, January 22, 2013 (view all comments by Joanne Haley)
Can't wait to read this!!! After visiting Alaska three times I find myself intriqued with the unique lifestyle people have to adapt to in this land of extremes. Alaska is definately an adventure & a beautiful place to encounter. Although I will never be a homesteader - the story of those who are will be an adventure in itself to read!!!
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Product Details

Independent Living on the Last Frontier
Tricia Brown and Nancy Gates
Gates, Nancy
Brown, Tricia
Alaska Northwest Books
Belmont, Calif. :
English language
English language -- Textbooks.
Construction-Do It Yourself
Edition Description:
First Edition, Illustrated
Series Volume:
Publication Date:
9.25 x 7.5 in

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Engineering » Construction » Do It Yourself
Featured Titles » General
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Product details 162 pages Alaska Northwest Books - English 9780882408118 Reviews:
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