What to pack for a trip to Alaska?

Jun 25, 2015


So I have come to the conclusion that everyone is either coming to Alaska, planning a trip to Alaska, thinking about a trip to Alaska, or has a genuine fascination with Alaska. Over the last couple weeks I have gotten a spike in the "questions about Alaska" email department. The majority of which have to do with what to wear, or what to pack for a trip up here. I have done my best to answer those emails, but thought why not throw a visual out there for others who might be looking for a resource. I by NO means am any kind of expert on the matter. I have definitely learned a lot about what works for me, and the kinds of activities that I enjoy. So here is my breakdown...

This is strictly for summers in Alaska, winter is a whole other novel that I could write. The biggest thing for up here are layers. The weather changes faster than my opinion on what I want for dinner. You can seriously experience all weather varieties in one day. Rain, sun, wind, snow, it can all happen, even in the summer. So, layers people l-a-y-e-r-s. 

You also want to keep in mind the activities you will be doing. I am all about the hiking, fishing, camping, and leisurely stroll kind of atmosphere. So these items work for that. First you want your base layer. For me that is a thin pull over and a pair of leggings. This is my uniform for just about everything outside. Then if the weather changes or we are hiking at a higher elevation I can throw on my fleece. If it happens to start to rain I can thrown on my rain jacket and pants on top of that. (I bought my rain gear one size up to fit over a few layers of clothing). Always always have a beanie and gloves packed away somewhere. Trust me, even in the summer you will find yourself reaching for them. While we were in Homer they were essential to have on the cold and windy beaches. A puffer vest is also pretty nice to have around for a chilly morning. 

Lately we have been having some higher than normal temps, so shorts and short sleeves have been my go-to. But, normally a pair of jeans would still be appropriate for this time of year. Not only that, but a button up is super easy to throw on, or wear by itself. I have a deep love for a denim on denim look, so a chambray top and a pair of skinnies is a must!! 

Footwear! I am an over packer in this department no matter what, but for Alaska you need more than a few footwear options. Rain boots are a year around staple. Hiking boots are a must. You could probably get away with wearing tennis shoes for a hike, but you will most likely encounter water to cross or step in, so a waterproof hiking boot is great to have! Sneakers to walk the paved trails, and a pair of sandals for just about everything else. 

A hat, sunglasses, and a backpack are your accessory must haves! The sun in Alaska is no joke! Not to mention the number of hours it is out a day. So bring all your items containing SPF. No matter what you have to have somewhere to put all these layers, extra shoes, gloves and hats, so a cute but durable backpack will be your friend. 

Obliviously this is all just the basics. You of course want to bring your normal clothing options. These things will just be your staples. Things you use over and over again. On top of that you will want bug spray, even if you forget underwear, you must bring bug spray! The mosquitoes are closely related to dinosaurs up here, they are huge and vicious!

As for going out, Alaska is pretty casual all around. Even in some of the nicer restaurants you can get away with jeans. Business casual at best is what would be required. But most places are super chill. I mean it's Alaska...

I am overdressed the majority of the time, but you can check out what I am running around in right here.

I really hopes this helps and answers some questions. This are the exact items I own, so I can only vouch for their dependability in the Alaskan terrain as I use them. If you have other specific questions I will try to answer them....or I will ask Chris. 

10 comments:

  1. I'd never heard of Marmot until this post. Are they like the LL Bean of Alaska?

    Also, I fall into the "fascination with Alaska" category. I think it's so cool, so pretty, so amazing... but probably won't get there until I'm retired.

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  2. I also love hearing/seeing about alaska, but not enough to live there, just to visit. I think it would be so fun to vacation there.

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  3. I love the Hunter rain boots, super cute! I really need some.

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    1. I am of the thinking, that you can never have too many. haha! They are an all year around staple up here. :)

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  4. Alaska isn't for me... But my brother got orders to there. Still unsure if he'll actually be going! I love those jean shorts!

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  5. So where is the bikini and flip flops? No? I remember on our Alaskan cruise I brought soooo many wrong options. I lived in jeans and tshirts and my ski jacket. In July. Ah well. Next time I'll get it right!!

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  6. I have always had a fascination with Alaska! Although I don't see myself visiting anytime soon, I still loved this post.

    xx Nina

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    1. Thanks Nina!! Alaska is definitely an interesting place. Summers are amazing...and make me forget all about the long winters.

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  7. Discovered your blog not long ago and love reading your posts. What a cute family! And you are so upbeat, even though you are crazy busy. We want to make a trip to AK someday, and your photos make us want to even more. Thanks!

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    1. Thank you so much :) Alaska is a must visit kind of place in my eyes!

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