UPS North: Driving a package car in The Last Frontier

Discussion in 'UPS Discussions' started by AKCoverMan, Feb 7, 2016.

  1. AKCoverMan

    AKCoverMan Active Member

    I've asked me in another thread to start a thread about Alaska, so here goes!

    Alaska: A Big But Mostly Empty Place

    Alaska, The Last Frontier. You remember Alaska, that little state off the coast of Arizona, down in the lower left hand corner of the map, right next to Hawaii?

    OK most people know it's a really big state, but the true scope is often lost because of the common map inset. As we love to say here "If you cut Alaska in half, Texas would be the third largest state!"

    But not a lot of people. Our poplulation ranks 48th in the nation, and our population density is dead last. I mean we can't even see 49th place from where we sit, were that far back. There are miles of miles of miles and miles. And most of it you cannot drive to.

    The majority of the population lives in the cities and towns where we have buildings and UPSers on the ground. However, a couple hundred small villages in what is called "Bush Alaska" are not served by UPSers. These villages (pop ranging from less that a hundred to a few hundred people) are not connected to the road system. Everything arrives by small plane, or by boat if the village is located on a river or coastline.

    The UPS focal point in the state is of course Anchorage. UPS Anchorage is a major Air Gateway. Almost all UPS Airlines flights between points in Asia and North America stop in Anchorage. Most of the traffic is just transiting, we act as a hub transferring shipments between flights or sometimes simply act as a refueling stop. However one 747 every night is dedicated to Alaska volume as well as a few containers every morning off flights from Louisville and Ontario. All volume from the lower 48 (including "ground") arrives by air.

    There is one Center housed out of the Anchorage Air Gateway which covers all of Anchorage including the adjacent towns of Girdwood, Indian, Eagle River, and Chugiak. It also covers the most populated area of the Matanuska-Susitna Valley (generally just called "The Valley") which includes the towns of Palmet and Wasilla. Most of The Valley is covered by a satellite building in Wasilla that is operated as part of the Anchorage Center.

    There are also centers located in Fairbanks, Kenai, Homer, Kodiak, Sitka, Ketchikan, and Juneau.

    Ok that was a dang long post.. More later. It's almost game time. I need another beer.
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  2. upschuck

    upschuck Well-Known Member

    You asked yourself?
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  3. Box Ox

    Box Ox Well-Known Member

    I enjoyed it either way.
  4. AKCoverMan

    AKCoverMan Active Member

    Lol..I mean "I've Got A Package For You"
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  5. clean hairy

    clean hairy Well-Known Member

    Is there a cliffs notes version?
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  6. toonertoo

    toonertoo Most Awesome Dog Staff Member

    I knew what he meant. Thank you for the time and energy to enlighten us to Alaska!
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  7. upschuck

    upschuck Well-Known Member

    I know, just playing with you.
  8. Pooter

    Pooter Active Member

    Fck Alaska. I can't outrun a grizzly :D
  9. Shifting Contents

    Shifting Contents Most Help Needed

    Have a friend who contracts for he army at fort greely

    He sends me pictures of beautiful landscapes

    I send him screen shots of my weather

    Mine doesn't have dashes in front of the numbers
  10. Box Ox

    Box Ox Well-Known Member

    Speaking, of, do AK drivers typically carry around bear spray or any gear we might think is unusual? We worry about dogs in the lower 48. But I've known people who lived up there and would send me pictures of bear, elk etc that had wandered right into Anchorage. And I imagine things get REALLY country. I'd hate to have a battery die on me up there.

    Think a UPSers magazine several months ago featured one of these centers. Was really tiny. Only a few drivers. But it was a very interesting read.
  11. Ms.PacMan

    Ms.PacMan Well-Known Member

    I watched a show once about Whittier. The whole town lives in the same building!
  12. rod

    rod retired and happy

    When I think of Alaska I think of miles and miles of beautiful scenery with a sprinkling of a few houses surrounded by tons of junk. They seem to like a lot of crap in their yards up there. Kind of like homes in Hawaii.
  13. Jackburton

    Jackburton Gone Fish'n

    Do you deliver to those gold dredgers out there in Nome that on TV that look like they couldn't put together a Lego set?
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  14. AKCoverMan

    AKCoverMan Active Member

    Alaska Survival TIp:

    You don't have to be faster than a grizzly. You just have to be faster than your buddy.
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  15. Jackburton

    Jackburton Gone Fish'n

  16. AKCoverMan

    AKCoverMan Active Member

    Alaska: lots of land, not a lot of people or roads. We don't deliver everywhere ourselves.

    Anchorage is big hub, few other centers around the state.

    More later.

    Is it really that long of a read?
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  17. AKCoverMan

    AKCoverMan Active Member

    I know drivers who carry bear spray. Sandbags and shovels in some PCs. Every car has snow chains.

    Moose in the city is not at all uncommon. Biggest thing is to just not corner the moose or get between mama and calf. Mostly they will just move on or keep eating the tree or bush they were working on, urban moose don't seem to phased by humans.

    I've seen bear in town a few times, usually on neighborhoods near woods. People have to keep garbage in bearproof trash containers. Seen fox in town a couple of times, and mountain sheep just south of town on the cliffs over the Seward Highway.
  18. AKCoverMan

    AKCoverMan Active Member

    We have several centers with just two or three routes, and I believe Ketchikan is just one. We have to loan these centers drivers from time to time to cover vacations etc.
  19. 1989

    1989 Well-Known Member

    20-25 years ago. The rumor was that Alaska was the place they sent you if you made a major screw up. (Managers and supervisors)
  20. Big Arrow Down...D

    Big Arrow Down...D Leave the gun,take the cannoli

    Are the sheep in Alaska as good looking as the sheep in Kentucky?
    @Turdferguson wants to know.