Benefits for Alaska
Photo Credits: UAF
Creating a hiking trail along the pipeline offers several benefits for the state and for adventure-seekers:
- Alaska earns money through tourism. It’s not just the money coming directly from the hikers. When the trail becomes famous then it stands to reason that the rest of Alaska may receive more tourists as well. In this day of social media, the pictures and videos of the spectacular scenery spreading all throughout the Web can attract more visitors to the state.
- The idea of having a hiking trail along the pipeline can become a perfect symbol of the state, just as the Statue of Liberty for NYC, the Hollywood sign for LA, and the Sydney Opera House for the Australian city. It combines the two significant aspects of Alaska: its natural beauty and its reliance on the oil and gas industry.
- Also, it upends all the arguments against the pipeline made by environmentalists, who vociferously held that the structure would mar the beauty of the Alaskan outdoors. It would be an ironic development if this structure would actually become the very tool that can introduce more people to the beauty of the Alaskan countryside.
Benefits for Hikers
Photo Credits: twoakhuskies
Hikers will certainly get their money’s worth when they undertake such a grand journey.
- The sights along the way are spectacular—these include glaciers, tundra and taiga, plus various forests and rivers. These are the sights that can truly uplift the spirits and can offer a powerful antidote to the dreary scenes of urban life. Such views can lure in travelers from all over the world.
- The route offers a sense of remoteness and isolation, but there’s no need to worry about getting lost or not getting any assistance when needed. The trail always goes right near the Richardson Highway.
- And since walking 800 miles will require stopovers along the way, there are already some lodges along the path that can provide respite for weary travelers. These places offer good food, hot showers, and a warm bed for the night.
Photo Credits: alaskaphotographics
All these benefits can make the Trans-Alaska Trail as famous as the Appalachian and Pacific Crest Trails. It can improve then Alaskan economy, provide more positive PR for Alyeska, and offer a great way for travelers all over the world to experience firsthand the beauty of Alaska. It’s a win-win situation for everyone!