All the Way to North – Preparing for Arctic Circle Trip

Picture: Point Barrow – the Northernmost Point of North America

Cuddly polar bears, pure white snow, and incredible northern lights display, I have ever thought about my first trip out of the sunny state of Hawaii was to the Arctic Circle – in winter.

I flew into Fairbanks Alaska, then a flight to the “top of the World” in Barrow, a city located 300 miles north of the Arctic Circle. Before the trip starts, I already checked out the video about the culture and lifestyles in barrow on http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aFeyZy6SDsE several times, which further enhanced my sense of curiosity of this northernmost place and made me extremely excited about this adventure.

Surprisingly, after a year living in Hawaii, I am not fear of the terrible winter weather anymore. Instead, I was thrilled to visit some places that have totally different conditions to Hawaii. My shopping list is growing: a parka, tons of wool socks, thermal sweaters, sunglasses, winter boots, and scarf. How can I collect all of the above winter gears when most of the shops in Hawaii only have summer outfits available all year around? I also need to get spare batteries for my camera.

The information provided on that youtube video is far away from enough, since I will go on the trip there in winter season. Precipitation, strong wind chill, and long-lasted darkness are all the crazy things that flow into my imagination, so I have prepped for the worst and filled my suitcase all with winter gears. I also purchased the insurance with full-millionaire style coverage since it is going to be extremely expensive to heli me out of there if I get hurt, especially when considering the fact that everything will be freezing after 30seconds exposed in the open air.

I am not going for a car rental; instead, I am hopping on a local tour bus that will take me around the city. My plan is to search for the polar bears, walking towards the point barrow, and see the skeleton of the bowhead whales.

When the packing is done and itinerary is arranged, the adventure has yet to begin. I will head into the world’s coldest, wildest and the most remote last frontier…and my only goal is to come back alive.

(To be continued)

Julie Cao

Julie Cao is a travel blogger, travel writer, and global citizen currently living in Toronto Ontario.

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