On this quiet Saturday afternoon, I parked the truck near the highway bridge that crosses the turquoise water of
I had seen a familiar sight when I’d driven through here earlier, something that reminded me of an article I’d read about how big
First though, before I tell you about that article, I need to boggle your mind with facts.
In that article I mentioned earlier, researchers at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, using satellite data, “added up all the concrete, paved roads, buildings and other manmade hard surfaces of the
The area was larger than
Think about that. Every bit of hard-surfaced ground in the contiguous forty-eight states, every outdoor basketball court, sidewalk, driveway, and mall parking lot, all of it—streets, highways, bridges, skyscrapers and eensy woodland cabins—would cover such a small part of Alaska we‘d hardly notice, especially because he covered up Southeast Alaska in his example.
Southeast is that little strip of coastal rainforest that keeps
Those statistics don’t include the surfaced areas in
Despite the feelings of many of us old-timers who believe there’s getting to be just too danged many people up here, the state’s population of 698,000 means a density of 1.03 persons per square mile. Don’t overlook that point between 1 and 03. Of course, that isn’t the way it is, because more than half of the population lives in and around
But this afternoon, as I snapped pictures from the bridge, I realized something: There’s room for all of us. Here, on a perfect Saturday afternoon in Cooper Landing with the temperature near thirty degrees, fishermen, swans, and ducks shared the wealth in perfect three part harmony.
Note the red ice fishing shelter on the ice and the two trucks parked near the right shoreline.