I recently received a call for a lady in Oregon. She wondered if I could take a look at her property to give her a value. She hadn’t been there for about 10 years and although she still enjoyed the idea of owning her piece of Alaska she now had better places to put this money.
She and her husband staked the 37 acres about 24 years ago when Alaska still had a homestead law. You could stake out up to 40 acres in a designated area. Then after proving up the state would allow you to purchase it for a nominal fee.
I was not in a place where I could write down all the info but I got her name and directions on how to find it. So a couple days later my 12 year old son and I headed up the Glenn Highway for a late afternoon outing. This property is about an hour drive one way on the scenic byway.
I had the sense to grab a tax map and a power pole map. I figured I was well prepared…little did I know. I remembered something about a 3/4 mile long narrow drive that hadn’t been used for many years. I would know I was on the right track when I found a chain between two spruce trees at the end. Then it was a 1/4 mile walk from there.
After trying three rough muddy roads we finally gave up and tried the old logging road down to the Matanuska River. I knew that this road would get us close to the property. Muddy Creek almost had the road washed out but the beater Toyota was able to get around it OK?here?s a poor quality video of that part of the adventure.
Time to give up and go home. After looking at Google Earth it became obvious how I made the wrong turn. This area just happened to be in high resolution, (most of Alaska is not), so I was able to zoom right in on the cabin and actually see the driveway.
Yesterday Gerrit and I made the trip again and drove right to it. There were 5 inch wide wolf tracks in the muddy road but absolutely no sign of any human intruders over the years it sat empty. Talk about secluded, you could sit on the steps there and completely forget that the rest of the world even exists.