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Fitness and Photography for Fun - A blog on staying fit by hiking and doing photography by David Mendosa

Alaska: The Road to Kougarok‏

September 4th, 2009 · 3 Comments

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“A taste for the beautiful is most cultivated out of doors, where there is no house and no housekeeper.”

- Henry David Thoreau

Today on my third day in Nome I explored the third and last road leading out of the town. The Kougarok Road took me 85 miles one-way into the interior. The road ends at the Kougarok River Bridge.

If a town of Kougarok ever existed, it has no buildings now. In fact, the only houses along the entire road are warming huts. No one lives anywhere along the Kougarok Road.

But I saw lots of beautiful tundra and clear lakes and streams as well as these mountains.

The Valley of the Pilgrim River

The Valley of the Pilgrim River

Pilgrim River and Mount Osborn

Pilgrim River and Mount Osborn

Sailboat on Salmon Lake

Sailboat on Salmon Lake

Now I’m back in Nome for a few hours before flying tonight to Anchorage. “Visiting the Nome area is a trip of a lifetime,” John says. It sure is.


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Posted in: Alaska, Photography

3 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Charlie Burrow // Apr 18, 2012 at 8:24 pm

    Great photos!

    My guess is the 85-mile Kougarok Road follows the route of the “Kougarok Limited” rail line that my mother rode on in 1933.

    To read her accoutn, go to

    then scroll down to “A ride on the Kougarok Limited”.

    My wife and I hope to explore the Kougarok Road when we visit Nome this summer.

    Best regards,

    Charlie Burrow
    Indianola, Washington

  • 2 David Mendosa // Apr 19, 2012 at 6:01 am

    Dear Charlie,

    I’m glad that my photos remind you of the time your parents lived in Nome. You and your family are lucky that your memories of them are so well preserved. Thanks for sharing them.


  • 3 Joann Pheasant // Aug 19, 2016 at 11:07 am

    I was a cook out at Kougarok in the 1980’s. We had a tent camp there for gold exploration. There were still a few old mine buildings from the great gold rush days. I remember one building with beautiful wallpaper still coming off of the wall.

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