Livin’ The Life

I thought I would use my first shot here in my PTO Field Journal to introduce myself and tell a little about life in the Alaskan bush. I live on a remote Alaska homestead with my wife and children. Our home is in southcentral Alaska it is just under an hour flying time from Anchorage in a Cessna 206. Our local airport is a mid-size lake about a mile from our home. In the summer the planes come & go on floats, in the winter they are equipped with skis for use on the ice.

Because everything is flown out by an air taxi service based in Anchorage we don’t make many trips to the local grocery store. Forget just one thing and you will learn to do with out for a few months. In the bush organization is the word, unfortunately grammar was never one of my strong points. It is also the reason I have learned to live a subsistence lifestyle. Up here it is called subsistence living, down there you refer to it as “living off the land”.  You really can’t “live off the land” any more but you can have the best of both worlds. Our economy is actually a combination of local resources and cash. On the subsistence side of life I hunt, fish, gather, and raise a large garden.

Home Sweet Home

Home Sweet Home


 For cash I work as a hunting guide, write some, and run a remote trap line. In many ways our lifestyle is no different than someone living in town. In town you get up in the morning and go to work out here we do the same. The big difference is your labor goes for money to buy the things you need, our labor goes directly to the resource. You pay a utility company to deliver your fuel so you can heat and cook. I go to the woodlot cut the trees down, haul them in, and fill the woodshed.

This is how we get our gas it is flown in, 180 gallons at a time. We normally get just one load a year sometimes we get a little extravagant then have to have a second one flown in, ouch! It took us a few years to learn to budget our gas just like we have to budget our money.


Fuel delivery day

 Here is our municipal water utility coming right from the source


And in the bush kids don’t have the latest & greatest but they do learn at a young age to improvise. Here they have transformed a pile of logs into a “their cabin”.


This Field Journal will  probably be a little different than most . I think writing about our unique lifestyle, telling how and why we live this way will give some insight and let anybody reading in live it vicariously. So much for the rambling I’ll see the next time around.

About the Author

Chuck Lamb

Chuck Lamb

Chuck Lamb lives on a remote Alaska homestead with his wife and sons. He makes a living guiding, running a remote trapline, and writing about homesteading and other outdoor skills.