I grew up in Alaska and try to visit often, so expect to see periodic posts from my trips home!
Anchorage grew out of the need for an accessible port for the railroads. It started as a tent town around the rail yards of Ship Creek and grew during both WWII and the Korean War to become a vital location for the military. As air travel increased Anchorage became a hub for carriers needing to refuel during ‘polar routes’. Next came the oil pipeline and the relocation of large oil corporations from Fairbanks to Anchorage. Recently tourism has become the main economic driver for the city. All of this Boom or Bust economics has left a city that has a frontier feel and to be honest, is not the prettiest of places. Yet there is still accessible beauty within minutes of downtown. Potter’s Marsh is one of those locations.
Potter’s Marsh is a bird sanctuary on the southern end of Anchorage. This beautiful location is just a 15-minute drive from downtown and offers breathtaking views of Turnagain Arm as well as the opportunity to view birds and wildlife. I also find it a wonderful place for photography as it is always changing. The 1/2 mile of boardwalk winds through the marsh and is built over watery openings, perfect for viewing eagles, pintails, swans, and the occasional moose or beaver.
On your return from Potter’s Marsh, you will drive by one of my favorite eateries in Anchorage, the Moosetooth right off Glenn Highway (there are not a lot of highways in Alaska so don’t worry about getting lost). I am not a huge fan of pizza and only eat it a few times a year, but the pizza here is worth the trip. Perhaps it is the wide selection of toppings. The variety is amazing! Perhaps it is the wide selection of beer. The variety of beer is amazing as well! If you are into IPAs or Pilsners than this may not be the place for you. If you are like me and enjoy darker beers than this will be your Nirvana, but get there early and expect to wait as they don’t take reservations.
If you find yourself in Anchorage with just a few hours to spend take the time to visit Potter’s March and stop for a pizza and beer upon your return. It is the perfect way to end a trip to Up North.