The fierce winter that has come upon us in the past few weeks has inevitably left our thoughts more or less preoccupied with the weather and the plummeting temperatures outside, blizzards and disasterous events, to name a few.

I am sure most of us keep an eye on the weather forecast all the time, desperately hoping for those first warmer days to appear soon – I know I do for sure.

There’s a certain area high up north though, whose inhabitants would be less than impressed with the recent display of winter madness here in Bulgaria – simply because they are generally quite used to a much harsher weather, or in other words, winter at its very worst – Alaska.

Here are some interesting facts about Alaska and its culture that we’ve put together for you:

Did you know that…

• There has been a widespread misconception circulating around for many years, claiming the Eskimos have an unusually large number of words for snow. To date though this claim remains subject of many debates and in fact, many online sources point another northern language as the one having a lot more words for snow – the Saami language (belonging to an indigenous circumpolar group), which apparently has an astounding 300 snow-related words (yes, three hundred, you read it right).

• Alaska is home to at least twenty distinct indigenous languages, which reflect the diverse cultural heritage of Alaska’s Native peoples.

• A very popular belief about Alaska maintains that the whole state goes dark in the winter and has endless sunlight in the summer – but it turns out it depends on where you are in Alaska, as the distribution of daylight and darkness is different throughout the state. For example Barrow, at the very top of the state, does indeed have a two-month period of complete darkness during the winter (no daylight for 64 days), while Anchorage has at least 4-5 hours of daylight even on the shortest day of the year.

• In certain Alaskan areas it’s possible to read a newspaper outdoors at 2 a.m. (two hours after sunset) in the days around the summer solstice, due to the long dawns and dusks that make the day appear longer than it actually is.

• Barrow has an average low temperature barely above zero even in July.

• Alaska is the U.S.’s largest state, over twice the size of Texas.

• Alaska was purchased from Russia in 1867 for under 2 cents an acre.

• Alaska is the U.S.’s largest state, over twice the size of Texas.

• There is more than three million lakes in Alaska.

• The capital of Alaska, Juneau (population of about 31,262) , can only be reached by air or sea – it’s the only state capital in the US with no road access.


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