The Alaskan Insider - Alaska Travel, Adventures and Life... From a Local Perspective

A Little Bit About Us

Hi, I’m Scott Stephens with Alaska Travel Journal. Thank you so much for stopping by our site today. We’re glad that you’re here. Have a look around. Read the “About Us” section below to get to know us a little bit better and to learn why we started the Alaska Travel Journal in the first place. Hopefully, we can share our passion about the Great Land with you. So, have a look around and enjoy. We look forward to hearing from you. Thanks.

Who are We and Why Alaska?

Hi there. You’re probably wondering about us. Maybe questions like, “Who are you guys?” and “Why Alaska?” Or, maybe you’re not, and you’re just looking for some great info about Alaska. In either case, I figured I should probably introduce myself…

Great family pic by our friend Kara Pennington. She’s an amazing portrait and wedding photographer!

My name is Scott Stephens. I am a family man through and through, which is why you probably catch me switching back and forth between I and We a lot (I’m no English major). The “we” I often refer to is my beloved family. I have an amazing, beautiful wife, Chelsea. And, we have two awesome kids: Clara and Liam. They were all great enough to follow me on this adventure, to live in Alaska (Liam wasn’t actually born yet when we moved here , but I’m sure he would have approved).

In addition to being a family man, I LOVE ALASKA!

Now that you know a little bit about me, send me a message.  I’d love to hear from you.

Why Alaska?

Why Alaska you wonder? How did I ever end up in Alaska? And why on earth would I move here? Alaska is full of igloos and cold year-round right? Well, I was born in the flat-lands (actually rolling hills), of Missouri, to a pretty awesome, empowering family. I actually grew up in the Ozarks, you know, Branson, hillbillies, country music. At least those are some the things the Ozarks are known for, for better and for worse. The truth is, the Ozarks are beautiful and will always hold a special place in my heart. For me though, the mountains were calling…

I saw mountains for the first time when I was 12, in Colorado. That was it. From the moment I got my license, my yearly road trips sent me further west and north every year, from Colorado to Wyoming to Montana and finally settling on Washington and Oregon in the Pacific Northwest as my favorites. I loved the raw wilderness, the temperate rain-forests, and the snow-capped peaks.

And then, I heard about Alaska…

The Lure of a Place I’d Never Been

I can’t remember who told me about it the time it finally clicked, but they were talking about how much they loved commercial fishing up here. The talked about the raw-ness, the frontier-ness. It sounded like everything I loved about coastal Washington and Oregon, but more… wild. From that moment I started learning more and more about Alaska. The more books and documentaries I consumed, the more I wanted to, had to, see it for myself. I was hooked!

I had to find a way to visit Alaska…

My First Alaska Trip

Denali National Park

Chelsea and I on the far right, with our friends Chris and Stacy in 2007.

Once we landed, we drove up to Denali National Park, (passing straight through the Mat-Su Valley without batting an eye. Who knew we’d live there eventually?) I remember the first time I saw “The Mountain”. I was looking at the Alaska range, trying to figure out which mountain was Denali (or Mt. McKinley). They all looked to be the same size. Then, I saw one lone mountain sticking out above the clouds. I’ve never seen anything like it!


You can’t see the rest of the Alaska Range here, but they’re about half the height of one poking out above the clouds, Denali.

We camped in Denali for a couple of days, having a great time. We then traveled down on the Kenai Peninsula to camp for a few more days. We sandwiched Homer between two trips to Seward. I saw my first glacier and enjoyed the awesome coastal town vibe in a lot of the towns on the Kenai. It was an amazing trip!

I knew someday I had to live here.

Seward Alaska

The incredible view from out of our tent on the beach in Seward Alaska!

There are eagles everywhere in Homer Alaska!


Making the Decision to Move to Alaska

Three years later, Chelsea and I were married, we had our daughter Clara and were pregnant with our son Liam. We lived in Michigan, and were having a great time, but I couldn’t seem to get Alaska out of my system. We decided that it was the right time to go for it, to move to Alaska.

The Alaska Stephens Today

Some fun, fall family pics last up in Hatcher Pass, about 15 miles from our house! Another pic by our friend Kara Pennington.

The beautiful “Little Su”, or Susitna, River in Hatcher Pass.

Today we are living a longtime dream for me, and I am so grateful! I absolutely love it here. We live in a beautiful, family-friendly, peaceful area near Palmer, Alaska. I’m surrounded by beautiful scenery, my amazing family, and an ever-growing group of awesome friends we’ve made here.

Sure, we’re a century or so behind the real frontier folk, but we’re still pioneers in our own way. We have a new branch of the family tree in place it’s never been before, pretty cool. Pioneering the way for future generations.

We are so happy to live here, but Alaska isn’t something for just one person. There’s so many other people out there who want to see, visit, and experience the wildness and beauty of Alaska. That’s why my dream of Alaska doesn’t end with us living here, but with us sharing it, and helping others to experience it as well! It’s our pleasure to share it with you through The Alaskan Insider!

Send us a quick message. We’d love to hear from you!

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