Picture of the bunkhouse at Serpentine Hot Springs. Traditional Alaskan Native healing practices believe that the hot springs were good to relieve arthritis, back pain, hip pain, headaches, skin rashes and other disorders. I think they just feel real good when it's cold.
The bunkhouse here sleeps up to 20 people if you don't mind a crowd. If you are able to get in here it will be a very rare event indeed in an incredibly wild place.
Outdoor Activities As with any Vanabode trip you should always visit the visitor center first and spend some time there getting all the info you can. Ask lots of questions. It is located in Nome, Alaska. Activities here include birdwatching for sure since there are raptors, waterfowl, sea birds, and sometimes Asiatic examples. If you can afford it take a small plane to to Serpentine Hot Springs and spend a few nights in the bunkhouse. During the day you can hike and explore huge granite rocks and gorges that encircle the springs. You can also fish here, the views are great, and if the others in your group are nice you can relax in the warmth of the hot springs and enjoy the starry nights.
You can take in camping, hiking, backpacking, nature and wildlife viewing, photography, filming, and coastal boating during the summer. In the Winter you can go dog sledding with a charter run or snowmobiling. There is limited cross-country skiing. Hunting and fishing are permitted with the appropriate licenses.
You can see the touch of histories gold rush era and some clues of prior Eskimo life. The Preserve and surrounding areas including Native villages, and you can observe traditional hand to mouth lifestyles and reindeer herding.
Aerial picture of Cottonwood Creek cabin. There are seven shelter cabins already built here within Bering Land Bridge National Preserve. They are all first come first served. During June and July there is often a shortage. Plan ahead as you don't want to camp in the open here.
Many believe that years ago people crossed the Bering Land Bridge into North America. They supposedly followed herds of large elk and reindeer none of which are in abundance here anymore.
Giardia and Cryptosporidium are protozoa found in unfiltered water and can make you very sick. Take the following precautions before drinking water from any natural source: Boil for 1 minute, use a water filter, and use iodine tablets. Most of Alaska's rivers carry glacial silt. This silt will quickly clog any water filter and render it inoperable.
Bering Land Bridge National Preserve is a small remnant of the original land bridge. It is protected by the United States government and is quite special. I think it is just too far a reach for typical Vanaboder.
Vanabode Special Notes: Even though Alaska can be extraordinary and Vanabode offers the absolute safest, easiest, cheapest, not to mention the fastest way to get there, I still cannot recommend this destination. It is rugged and wild and the inclement weather can be devastating. The cabins are in short supply. If you do travel during the very warmest months, do some heavy planning and research so that your van is outfitted for the extreme and unpredictable weather especially in the Bering Land Bridge National Preserve, Alaska.