Mount Adams (Washington)
Mount Adams, known by some Native American tribes as Pahto or Klickitat, is a active stratovolcano in the Cascade Range. Although Adams has not erupted in more than 1,000 years, it is not considered extinct, it is the second-highest mountain in the U. S. state of Washington, after Mount Rainier. Adams, named for President John Adams, is a member of the Cascade Volcanic Arc, is one of the arc's largest volcanoes, located in a remote wilderness 34 miles east of Mount St. Helens; the Mount Adams Wilderness consists of the western part of the volcano's cone. The eastern side of the mountain is designated as part of the territory of the Yakama Nation. Adams' asymmetrical and broad body rises 1.5 miles above the Cascade crest. Its nearly flat summit was formed as a result of cone-building eruptions from separated vents. Air travelers flying the busy routes above the area sometimes confuse Mount Adams with nearby Mount Rainier, which has a similar flat-topped shape; the Pacific Crest Trail traverses the western flank of the mountain.
Mount Adams stands about 50 miles south of Mount Rainier. It is 55 miles north of Mount Hood in Oregon; the nearest major cities are Yakima, 50 miles to the northeast, the Portland metropolitan area, 60 miles to the southwest. Between half and two thirds of Adams is within the Mount Adams Wilderness of the Gifford Pinchot National Forest; the remaining area is within the Mount Adams Recreation Area of the Yakama Indian Reservation. While many of the volcanic peaks in Oregon are located on the Cascade Crest, Adams is the only active volcano in Washington to do so, it is farther east than all the rest of Washington's volcanoes except Glacier Peak. Adams is one of the long-lived volcanoes in the Cascade Range, with minor activity beginning 900,000 years ago and major cone building activity beginning 520,000 years ago; the whole mountain has been eroded by glaciers to an elevation of 8,200 feet twice during its lifetime. The current cone was built during the most recent major eruptive period 40,000–10,000 years ago.
Standing at 12,281 feet, Adams towers about 9,800 feet over the surrounding countryside. It is third-highest in the Cascade Range; because of the way it developed, it is the largest stratovolcano in Washington and second-largest in the Cascades, behind only Mount Shasta. Its large size is reflected in its 18 miles -diameter base, which has a prominent north-south trending axis. Adams is the source of the headwaters for the Lewis River and White Salmon River; the many streams that emanate from the glaciers and from springs at its base flow into two more major river systems, the Cispus River and the Klickitat River. The streams on the north and west portions of Adams feed the Cispus River, which joins the Cowlitz River near Riffe Lake, the Lewis River. To the south, the White Salmon River has its source on the lower flanks of the west side of Adams and gains additional flows from streams along the southwest side of the mountain. Streams on the east side all flow to the Klickitat River. Streams on all sides, at some point in their courses, provide essential irrigation water for farming and ranching.
The Klickitat and White Salmon rivers are nearly free flowing, with only small barriers to aid irrigation and erosion control. The Cispus and Lewis rivers have been impounded with dams farther downstream for flood control and power generation purposes. Mount Adams is the second-most isolated, in terms of access, stratovolcano in Washington. Only two major highways pass close to it. Highway 12 passes about 25 miles to the north of Adams through the Cascades. Highway 141 comes within 13 miles of Adams as it follows the White Salmon River valley up from the Columbia River to the small town of Trout Lake. From either highway, travelers have to use Forest Service roads to get closer to the mountain; the main access roads, FR 23, FR 82, FR 80, FR 21, are paved for part of their length. Most all other roads are dirt, with varying degrees of maintenance. Access to the Mount Adams Recreation Area is by way of FR 82, which becomes BIA 285 at the Yakama reservation boundary. BIA 285 is known to be rough and suitable only for trucks or high-clearance vehicles.
Two small towns and Trout Lake, are located in valleys less than 15 miles from the summit, Glenwood on the southeast quarter and Trout Lake on the southwest quarter. Its size and distance from major cities, the tendency of some people to forget or ignore Mount Adams, has led some people to call this volcano "The Forgotten Giant of Washington."On a clear day from the summit, other visible volcanoes in the Cascade Range include Mount Rainier, Mount Baker, Glacier Peak to the north, Mount St. Helens to the west, all in Washington. Contrary to legend, the flatness of Adams' current summit area is not due to the loss of the volcano's peak. Instead it was formed as a result of cone-building eruptions from separated vents. A false summit, Pikers Peak, rises 11,657 feet on the south side of the nearly half-mile wide summit area; the true summit is about 600 feet higher on the sloping north side. A small lava and scoria cone marks the highest point. Suksdorf Ridge is a long buttress descending from the false summit to an elevation of 8,000 feet.
This structure was built by repeated lava flows in the late Pleistocene. The Pinnacle fo
Haleakalā, or the East Maui Volcano, is a massive shield volcano that forms more than 75% of the Hawaiian Island of Maui. The western 25% of the island is formed by another volcano, Mauna Kahalawai referred to as the West Maui Mountains; the tallest peak of Haleakalā, at 10,023 feet, is Puʻu ʻUlaʻula. From the summit one looks down into a massive depression some 11.25 km across, 3.2 km wide, nearly 800 m deep. The surrounding walls are steep and the interior barren-looking with a scattering of volcanic cones. Early Hawaiians applied the name Haleakalā to the general mountain. Haleakalā is the name of a peak on the southwestern edge of Kaupō Gap. In Hawaiian folklore, the depression at the summit of Haleakalā was home to the grandmother of the demigod Māui. According to the legend, Māui's grandmother helped him capture the sun and force it to slow its journey across the sky in order to lengthen the day. According to the United States Geological Survey USGS Volcano Warning Scheme for the United States, the Volcano Alert Level for Haleakala as of August 2015 was "normal".
A Normal status is used to designate typical volcanic activity in a non-eruptive phase. Haleakala has produced numerous eruptions including in the last 500 years; this volcanic activity has been along two rift zones: east. These two rift zones together form an arc that extends from La Perouse Bay on the southwest, through the Haleakalā Crater, to Hāna to the east; the east rift zone continues under the ocean beyond the east coast of Maui as Haleakalā Ridge, making the combined rift zones one of the longest in the Hawaiian Islands chain. Until East Maui Volcano was thought to have last erupted around 1790, based on comparisons of maps made during the voyages of La Perouse and George Vancouver. Recent advanced dating tests, have shown that the last eruption was more to have been in the 17th century; these last flows from the southwest rift zone of Haleakalā make up the large lava deposits of the Ahihi Kina`u/La Perouse Bay area of South Maui. Contrary to popular belief, Haleakalā crater is not volcanic in origin, nor can it be called a caldera.
Scientists believe that Haleakalā's crater was formed when the headwalls of two large erosional valleys merged at the summit of the volcano. These valleys formed the two large gaps — Koʻolau on the north side and Kaupō on the south — on either side of the depression. Macdonald, Abbott, & Peterson state it this way: Haleakalā is far smaller than many volcanic craters. On the island of Hawaiʻi, lava-flow hazards are rated on a scale of one through nine with one being the zone of highest hazard and nine being the zone of lowest hazard. For example, the summits and rift zones of Kilauea and Mauna Loa volcanoes are rated Hazard Zone 1. Using this same scale, preliminary estimates of lava-flow hazard zones on Maui made in 1983 by the U. S. Geological Survey rated the summit and southwest rift zone of Haleakala as Hazard Zone 3; the steep, downslope areas of the Kanaio and Kahikinui ahupuaʻa and the area north of Hana are rated as Hazard Zone 4. Other areas of Haleakala are rated comparable to the lava-flow hazards of Mauna Kohala.
These high hazard estimates for Haleakala are based on the frequency of its eruptions. Haleakala has erupted three times in the last 900 years. By way of comparison, both Mauna Loa and Kilauea have erupted more than a dozen times each in the last 90 years. Hualalai has an eruption rate comparable to Haleakala. All of Hualalai is rated as Hazard Zone 4. However, the frequency of eruption of a volcano is only one of the criteria on which hazards are based; the other important criterion is the lava flow coverage rate. Using the preliminary dates for Haleakala flows, only 8.7 square miles of lava flows have been emplaced in the last 900 years. In comparison 43 square miles of Hualalai are covered with flows 900 years old or younger and 104 square miles on Kilauea and 85 square miles on Mauna Loa are covered by lavas less than 200 years old. Thus, Haleakala is a distant fourth in coverage rates. Surrounding and including the crater is Haleakalā National Park, a 30,183-acre park, of which 24,719 acres are wilderness.
The park includes the summit depression, Kipahulu Valley on the southeast, ʻOheʻo Gulch, extending to the shoreline in the Kipahulu area. From the summit, there are two main trails leading into Haleakalā: Sliding Sands Trail and Halemauʻu Trail; the temperature near the summit tends to vary between about 40 °F and 60 °F and given the thin air and the possibility of dehydration at that elevation, the walking trails can be more challenging than one might expect. This is aggravated by the fact; because of this, hikers are faced with a difficult return ascent after descending 2000 ft or more to the crater floor. Despite this, Haleakalā is popular with tourists and locals alike, who venture to its summit, or to the visitor center just below the summit, to view the sunrise. There is lodging in the form of a few simple cabins, though no gas is available in the park; because of the remarkable clarity and stillness of the air, its elevation (with atmospheric pressure of 71 kilopascal
Mount Shishaldin is a moderately active volcano on Unimak Island in the Aleutian Islands chain of Alaska. It is the highest mountain peak of the Aleutian Islands; the most symmetrical cone-shaped glacier-clad large mountain on earth, the volcano's topographic contour lines are nearly perfect circles above 6,500 feet. The lower north and south slopes are somewhat steeper than western slopes; the volcano is the westernmost of three large stratovolcanoes along an east–west line in the eastern half of Unimak Island. The Aleuts named the volcano Sisquk, meaning "mountain which points the way when I am lost." The upper 6,600 ft is entirely covered by glacial snow and ice. In all, Shishaldin's glacial shield covers about 35 square miles, it is flanked to the northwest by 24 monogenetic parasitic cones, an area blanketed by massive lava flows. The Shishaldin cone is less than 10,000 years old and is constructed on a glacially eroded remnant of an ancestral somma and shield. Remnants of the older ancestral volcano are exposed on the west and northeast sides at 4,900 to 5,900 ft elevation.
The Shishaldin edifice contains about 120 square miles of material. A steady steam plume rises from its small summit crater, about 500 ft across and breached along the north rim. In 1967, Shishaldin Volcano was designated as a National Natural Landmark by the National Park Service; this volcano has had many recorded eruptions during the 19th and 20th centuries, a couple reports of volcanic activity in the area during the 18th century may have referred to Shishaldin as well. Therefore, the volcano's entire recorded history is spotted with reports of activity. AVO has 24 confirmed eruptions at Shishaldin, making it the volcano with the third most confirmed eruptions. However, Shishaldin has the most eruptions in Alaska, but half of the eruptions are unconfirmed, with the most recent one being in January 2015. Mount Shishaldin's most recent eruptions were in 1995–96 and 1999. Since the 1999 eruption, it has maintained seismic activity having low-magnitude volcanic earthquakes every 1–2 minutes. During this period of non-eruptive seismic activity, it has been puffing steam, with puffs occurring about every 1–2 minutes.
There were reports in 2004 of small quantities of ash being emitted with the steam. The Alaska Volcano Observatory monitors the volcano for more hazardous activity with seismometers and satellite images. Visual observations are rare, because of the remote location of the volcano; the first recorded ascent of Shishaldin was by G. Peterson and two companions. Given the straightforward nature of the climbing, it is possible that an earlier ascent occurred, either by native Aleuts, Russians, or other visitors. Shishaldin is a popular ski descent for local climbers. Due to its remoteness, Shishaldin is not climbed by outsiders. List of mountain peaks of North America List of mountain peaks of the United States List of mountain peaks of Alaska List of Ultras of the United States List of volcanoes in the United States "Shishaldin". Global Volcanism Program. Smithsonian Institution. Petersen, Tanja.
Denali is the highest mountain peak in North America, with a summit elevation of 20,310 feet above sea level. With a topographic prominence of 20,156 feet and a topographic isolation of 4,629 miles, Denali is the third most prominent and third most isolated peak on Earth, after Mount Everest and Aconcagua. Located in the Alaska Range in the interior of the U. S. state of Alaska, Denali is the centerpiece of Preserve. The Koyukon people who inhabit the area around the mountain have referred to the peak as "Denali" for centuries. In 1896, a gold prospector named it "Mount McKinley" in support of then-presidential candidate William McKinley. In August 2015, following the 1975 lead of the State of Alaska, the United States Department of the Interior announced the change of the official name of the mountain to Denali. In 1903, James Wickersham recorded the first attempt at climbing Denali, unsuccessful. In 1906, Frederick Cook claimed the first ascent, proven to be false; the first verifiable ascent to Denali's summit was achieved on June 7, 1913, by climbers Hudson Stuck, Harry Karstens, Walter Harper, Robert Tatum, who went by the South Summit.
In 1951, Bradford Washburn pioneered the West Buttress route, considered to be the safest and easiest route, therefore the most popular in use. On September 2, 2015, the U. S. Geological Survey announced that the mountain is 20,310 feet high, not 20,320 feet, as measured in 1952 using photogrammetry. Denali is a granitic pluton lifted by tectonic pressure from the subduction of the Pacific Plate beneath the North American Plate; the forces that lifted Denali cause many deep earthquakes in Alaska and the Aleutian Islands. The Pacific Plate is seismically active beneath Denali, a tectonic region, known as the "McKinley cluster". Denali has a summit elevation of 20,310 feet above sea level, making it the highest peak in North America and the northernmost mountain above 6,000 meters elevation in the world. Measured from base to peak at some 18,000 ft, it is among the largest mountains situated above sea level. Denali rises from a sloping plain with elevations from 1,000 to 3,000 ft, for a base-to-peak height of 17,000 to 19,000 ft.
By comparison, Mount Everest rises from the Tibetan Plateau at a much higher base elevation. Base elevations for Everest range from 13,800 ft on the south side to 17,100 ft on the Tibetan Plateau, for a base-to-peak height in the range of 12,000 to 15,300 ft. Denali's base-to-peak height is little more than half the 33,500 ft of the volcano Mauna Kea, which lies under water. Denali has two significant summits: the South Summit is the higher one, while the North Summit has an elevation of 19,470 ft and a prominence of 1,270 ft; the North Summit is sometimes counted as sometimes not. Five large glaciers flow off the slopes of the mountain; the Peters Glacier lies on the northwest side of the massif, while the Muldrow Glacier falls from its northeast slopes. Just to the east of the Muldrow, abutting the eastern side of the massif, is the Traleika Glacier; the Ruth Glacier lies to the southeast of the mountain, the Kahiltna Glacier leads up to the southwest side of the mountain. With a length of 44 mi, the Kahiltna Glacier is the longest glacier in the Alaska Range.
The Koyukon Athabaskans who inhabit the area around the mountain have for centuries referred to the peak as Dinale or Denali. The name is based on a Koyukon word for "high" or "tall". During the Russian ownership of Alaska, the common name for the mountain was Bolshaya Gora, the Russian translation of Denali, it was called Densmore's Mountain in the late 1880s and early 1890s after Frank Densmore, an Alaskan prospector, the first European to reach the base of the mountain. In 1896, a gold prospector named it McKinley as political support for then-presidential candidate William McKinley, who became president the following year; the United States formally recognized the name Mount McKinley after President Wilson signed the Mount McKinley National Park Act of February 26, 1917. In 1965, Lyndon B. Johnson declared the north and south peaks of the mountain the "Churchill Peaks", in honor of British statesman Winston Churchill; the Alaska Board of Geographic Names changed the name of the mountain to Denali in 1975, how it is called locally.
However, a request in 1975 from the Alaska state legislature to the United States Board on Geographic Names to do the same at the federal level was blocked by Ohio congressman Ralph Regula, whose district included McKinley's hometown of Canton. On August 30, 2015, just ahead of a presidential visit to Alaska, the Barack Obama administration announced the name Denali would be restored in line with the Alaska Geographic Board's designation. U. S. Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell issued the order changing the name to Denali on August 28, 2015, effective immediately. Jewell said the change had been "a long time coming"; the renaming of the mountain received praise from Alaska's senior U. S. senator, Lisa Murkowski, who had introduced legislation to accomplish the name change, but it drew criticism from several politicians from Pres
Mount Fairweather, is the highest mountain in the Canadian province of British Columbia, with an elevation of 4,671 metres. It is located 20 km east of the Pacific Ocean on the border of Alaska, United States and western British Columbia, Canada. Most of the mountain lies within Glacier Bay National Park and Preserve in the City and Borough of Yakutat, though the summit borders Tatshenshini-Alsek Provincial Park, British Columbia, it is designated as Boundary Peak 164 or as US/Canada Boundary Point #164. The mountain was named on May 3, 1778 by Captain James Cook for the unusually good weather encountered at the time; the name has been translated into many languages. It was called "Mt. Beautemps" by La Perouse, "Mte. Buen-tiempo" by Galiano, "Gor-Khoroshy-pogody" on Russian Hydrographic Dept. Chart 1378 in 1847, "G Fayerveder" by Captain Tebenkov, Imperial Russian Navy, it was called "Schönwetterberg" by Constantin Grewingk in 1850 and "Schönwetter Berg" by Justus Perthes in 1882. Fairweather was first climbed in 1931 by Allen Carpé and Terris Moore.
Mount Fairweather is located right above Glacier Bay in the Fairweather Range of the Saint Elias Mountains. Mount Fairweather marks the northwest extremity of the Alaska Panhandle. Like many peaks in the St. Elias Mountains, Mount Fairweather has great vertical relief due to its dramatic rise from Glacier Bay. However, due to poor weather in the area, this effect is obscured with the clouds which hides the summit from view. Known in the Tlingit language as Tsalxhaan, it is said this mountain and Yaas'éit'aa Shaa were next to each other but had an argument and separated, their children, the mountains in between the two peaks, are called Tsalxhaan Yatx'i Despite its name, Mount Fairweather has harsh weather conditions. It receives over 100 inches of precipitation each year and sees temperatures of around -50 °F. 1926 Allen Carpe, Andy Taylor and W. S. Ladd reached 2,890 m on the West Ridge, but were forced back due to a steep notch in the ridge that made ferrying supplies difficult. 1930 Bradford Washburn made an attempt on the West Ridge but traveling conditions forced a retreat at 2,040 metres.
1931 Allen Carpe and Terris Moore summited via the Southeast Ridge on June 8, 1931 1958 Paddy Sherman and 7 other Canadians reached the summit via the SE Ridge on June 26, 1958. 1968 West Ridge, Loren Adkins, Walter Gove, Paul Myhre, John Neal and Kent Stokes - summit reached June 12, 1968 1973 Southwest Ridge, Peter Metcalf, Henry Florschutz, Toby O'Brien and Lincoln Stoller. Summit reached on July 10, 1973. After failing to reach the summit in 1926 due to terrain difficulty on their chosen route, Allen Carpe, W. S. Ladd, Andy Taylor returned in 1931 along with a new member Terry Moore. In early April the group began their approach by boat but stormy weather delayed them rounding Cape Fairweather until April 17, they unloaded their supplies on the beach. Backtracking 21 kilometres along the coast, they made their way to the Fairweather Glacier. From base camp in a spot they called Paradise Valley, they decided to attempt the mountain from the south rather than via the west ridge. Due to deep snow, they realized that skis and snowshoes would be of great help so Carpe and Moore made the 80 km round trip to fetch them from Lituya Bay.
They ascended the glacier from base setup camp at 1,520 m on the mountain's south face. On May 25, they established high camp at 2,740 m after making significant progress up a ridge on a rare day of good weather. However, the weather turned and they were forced to descend after an overnight coating of snow. After waiting out the snowstorm for six days at lower camp, they made their way back up to high camp on June 2, they left for the summit at 1:30 am on June 3 and having reached the southeast shoulder by mid-morning, they were feeling so confident that they left the willow wands behind. However, higher altitude and the weeks of hard effort slowed their progress and the weather changed. By 1 pm not far from the summit, they decided to retreat and had to descend without the wands to guide them, they managed to reach the tents by 4 pm. Ladd and Taylor volunteered to descend due to dwindling supplies at high camp with the hope that Carpe and Moore would be able to make another attempt in good weather.
The storm raged for four days before it cleared in the evening on June 7. At 10 pm, Carpe and Moore set out for the summit and with no further difficulties made it to the top. List of mountain peaks of North America List of mountain peaks of Canada List of mountain peaks of the United States List of Boundary Peaks of the Alaska-British Columbia/Yukon border NOAA Ship Fairweather Sherman, Paddy. Cloud Walkers. MacMillan. ISBN 0-916890-79-1
Mount Saint Elias
Mount Saint Elias designated Boundary Peak 186, is the second highest mountain in both Canada and the United States, being situated on the Yukon and Alaska border. It lies about 42 kilometres southwest of the highest mountain in Canada; the Canadian side is part of Kluane National Park and Reserve, while the U. S. side of the mountain is located within Wrangell-St. Elias National Park and Preserve, its name in Tlingit is Yasʼéitʼaa Shaa, meaning "mountain behind Icy Bay", is called Shaa Tlein "Big Mountain" by the Yakutat Tlingit. It is one of the most important crests of the Kwaashkʼiḵwáan clan since they used it as a guide during their journey down the Copper River. Mount Fairweather at the apex of the British Columbia and Alaska borders at the head of the Alaska Panhandle is known as Tsalx̱aan, it is said this mountain and Yasʼéitʼaa Shaa were next to each other but had an argument and separated, their children, the mountains in between the two peaks, are called Tsalx̱aan Yátxʼi. The mountain was first sighted by European explorers on July 1741 by Vitus Bering of Russia.
While some historians contend that the mountain was named by Bering, others believe that eighteenth century mapmakers named it after Cape Saint Elias, when it was left unnamed by Bering. Mount Saint Elias is notable for its immense vertical relief, its summit rises 18,008 feet vertically in just 10 miles horizontal distance from the head of Taan Fjord, off of Icy Bay. In 2007, an Austrian documentary, Mount. St. Elias, was made about a team of skier/mountaineers determined to make "the planet's longest skiing descent" – ascending the mountain and skiing nearly all 18,000 feet down to the Gulf of Alaska; the climbers ended up summiting on the second attempt and skiing down to 13,000 ft. Mt. St. Elias was first climbed on July 31, 1897 by an Italian expedition led by famed explorer Prince Luigi Amedeo, Duke of the Abruzzi, included noted mountain photographer Vittorio Sella; the second ascent was not until 1946, when a group from the Harvard Mountaineering Club including noted mountain historian Dee Molenaar climbed the Southwest Ridge route.
The summit party comprised Molenaar, his brother Cornelius and Betty Kauffman, Maynard Miller, William Latady, Benjamin Ferris. William Putnam did not make the summit, they used eleven camps, eight of which were on the approach from Icy Bay, three of which were on the mountain. They were supported by multiple air drops of food; the first winter ascent was made on February 13, 1996 by David Briggs, Gardner Heaton and Joe Reichert. After being flown by pilots Steve Ranney and Gary Graham, in to 2,300 feet on the Tyndal Glacier, they climbed the southwest ridge and followed the "Milk Bowl" variation in order to avoid 2,000 feet of loose rock on the normal route; the team had planned to begin their ascent from the ocean and cross the Tyndal Glacier but the terrain was in poor condition. Mount Saint Elias is infrequently climbed today, despite its height, because it has no easy route to the summit and because of its prolonged periods of bad weather. Abruzzi Ridge Livermore Ridge List of mountain peaks of North America List of mountain peaks of Canada List of mountain peaks of the United States List of Boundary Peaks of the Alaska-British Columbia/Yukon border Wood, Michael.
Alaska: a climbing guide. The Mountaineers. Media related to Mount Saint Elias at Wikimedia Commons Mt. St. Elias on Peakware
Alaska is a U. S. state in the northwest extremity of North America, just across the Bering Strait from Asia. The Canadian province of British Columbia and territory of Yukon border the state to the east and southeast, its most extreme western part is Attu Island, it has a maritime border with Russia to the west across the Bering Strait. To the north are the Chukchi and Beaufort seas—southern parts of the Arctic Ocean; the Pacific Ocean lies to southwest. It is the largest U. S. state by the seventh largest subnational division in the world. In addition, it is the most sparsely populated of the 50 United States. Half of Alaska's residents live within the Anchorage metropolitan area. Alaska's economy is dominated by the fishing, natural gas, oil industries, resources which it has in abundance. Military bases and tourism are a significant part of the economy; the United States purchased Alaska from the Russian Empire on March 30, 1867, for 7.2 million U. S. dollars at two cents per acre. The area went through several administrative changes before becoming organized as a territory on May 11, 1912.
It was admitted as the 49th state of the U. S. on January 3, 1959. The name "Alaska" was introduced in the Russian colonial period when it was used to refer to the Alaska Peninsula, it was derived from an Aleut-language idiom. It means object to which the action of the sea is directed. Alaska is the northernmost and westernmost state in the United States and has the most easterly longitude in the United States because the Aleutian Islands extend into the Eastern Hemisphere. Alaska is the only non-contiguous U. S. state on continental North America. It is technically part of the continental U. S. but is sometimes not included in colloquial use. S. called "the Lower 48". The capital city, Juneau, is situated on the mainland of the North American continent but is not connected by road to the rest of the North American highway system; the state is bordered by Yukon and British Columbia in Canada, to the east, the Gulf of Alaska and the Pacific Ocean to the south and southwest, the Bering Sea, Bering Strait, Chukchi Sea to the west and the Arctic Ocean to the north.
Alaska's territorial waters touch Russia's territorial waters in the Bering Strait, as the Russian Big Diomede Island and Alaskan Little Diomede Island are only 3 miles apart. Alaska has a longer coastline than all the other U. S. states combined. Alaska is the largest state in the United States by total area at 663,268 square miles, over twice the size of Texas, the next largest state. Alaska is larger than all but 18 sovereign countries. Counting territorial waters, Alaska is larger than the combined area of the next three largest states: Texas and Montana, it is larger than the combined area of the 22 smallest U. S. states. There are no defined borders demarcating the various regions of Alaska, but there are six accepted regions: The most populous region of Alaska, containing Anchorage, the Matanuska-Susitna Valley and the Kenai Peninsula. Rural unpopulated areas south of the Alaska Range and west of the Wrangell Mountains fall within the definition of South Central, as do the Prince William Sound area and the communities of Cordova and Valdez.
Referred to as the Panhandle or Inside Passage, this is the region of Alaska closest to the rest of the United States. As such, this was where most of the initial non-indigenous settlement occurred in the years following the Alaska Purchase; the region is dominated by the Alexander Archipelago as well as the Tongass National Forest, the largest national forest in the United States. It contains the state capital Juneau, the former capital Sitka, Ketchikan, at one time Alaska's largest city; the Alaska Marine Highway provides a vital surface transportation link throughout the area, as only three communities enjoy direct connections to the contiguous North American road system. Designated in 1963; the Interior is the largest region of Alaska. Fairbanks is the only large city in the region. Denali National Park and Preserve is located here. Denali is the highest mountain in North America. Southwest Alaska is a sparsely inhabited region stretching some 500 miles inland from the Bering Sea. Most of the population lives along the coast.
Kodiak Island is located in Southwest. The massive Yukon–Kuskokwim Delta, one of the largest river deltas in the world, is here. Portions of the Alaska Peninsula are considered part of Southwest, with the remaining portions included with the Aleutian Islands; the North Slope is tundra peppered with small villages. The area is known for its massive reserves of crude oil, contains both the National Petroleum Reserve–Alaska and the Prudhoe Bay Oil Field; the city of Utqiagvik known as Barrow, is the northernmost city in the United States and is located here. The Northwest Arctic area, anchored by Kotzebue and containing the Kobuk River valley, is regarded as being part of this region. However, the respective Inupiat of the No