Hepatitis meeting 2012

Materials from the meeting:
Press these links for agenda and minutes.
The Circumpolar Viral Hepatitis Working Group Meeting 2012 will take place in Anchorage, on Friday, August 3rd. Please see the message from the organisers below:
Henrik, Carla and I will be preparing for the upcoming Circumpolar Viral Hepatitis Working Group Meeting in Anchorage that will be prior to the 15th ICCH in Fairbanks.
I have put together some travel/tourist information for your visit to Alaska this August.  Please do not hesitate to contact Brian, Steve Livingston or myself (or Mike Bruce and Dana Bruden!) if you have any questions, needs for recommendations, etc.
Here are a few quick overviews for those of you who have not been to Alaska before.
FIRST – Our Working Group Meeting will be held in Anchorage, on Friday, August 3rd  and the ICCH meeting will be in Fairbanks beginning on Sunday, August 5th.  We have conference / meeting space reserved here in Anchorage at the Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium.  If anyone requires a letter of invitation for the working group meeting, please let Carla, Henrik and I, or Brian know.
So, as an Alaskan, here are my recommendations, I hope the other Alaskans chime in as well!
Alaskans like their microbrews, local coffee and fresh seafood – here are some local places I like to go –
  • Kaladi Brothers Coffee- Local Coffee Roaster
  • F Street Pub  (old pilot’s bar – great fresh made local seafood)
  • Snow City Café (breakfast/lunch)
  • Snow Goose (has amazing views and a great outdoor deck, good for a beer, food not so good)
  • Famous/Infamous:
  • Humpy’s Alehouse
  • Moose’s Tooth Alehouse
  • Really really infamous/local-only:
  • Darwin’s Theory Bar

For those wanting to stay within walking distance of our working group meeting on Friday 3rd, the hotel below is very close, and walkable, less than 1 mile, probably closer to 0.5 miles (0.8 km). Next to a nice lake and trail that connects with the city trail system (bike/walk paved trail).

Alaska Native Tribal Consortium, and this hotel are located in the medical/university district in Anchorage, approximately 2 miles from the center of downtown Anchorage. There is a great city bus ride from downtown Anchorage that drops off very close to ANTHC as well (Bus #75) – I believe it is $1.50 to ride one way, the main bus station is downtown Anchorage. If staying downtown Anchorage, everything is very accessible (taxis, bus, hotels, etc.), but the downtown hotels will be most expensive.


Site Seeing:

  • Anchorage Museum
  • Alaska Native Heritage Center
Two wonderful national parks are accessible by car or train from Anchorage:
1. Kenai Fjords National Park      http://www.nps.gov/kefj/index.htm
• Located / Accessible from Seward, Alaska – approx 2-2.5 hr drive from Anchorage along a very scenic highway
• Boat tours available to see marine wildlife and coastal glaciers
• Exit Glacier is accessible by car, and then by foot – a 4.5 mile hike up to the Harding Ice field
• Park website will recommend boat tours – several companies available including Kenai Fjord Tours and Major Marine Tours
• Coastal hiking in Resurrection bay – including a tidal trail out to old WWII buildings
2. Denali National Park
• Located 250 miles North from Anchorage – accessible by car (4 hr drive) or by train ( 8 hr ride).
• Located 120+ miles South from Fairbanks – accessible by car or train
• Immense amount of back-country camping, wildlife, tours, etc.
• Accommodations (B&Bs) outside of park, but recommend staying in park
• MAKE RESERVATIONS EARLY – if you want a campsite within the park – can do this going through park website, a wide range of campgrounds with facilities, from primitive to running water and showers.
Also near and around Anchorage – Chugach National Forest – many day hikes accessible from Anchorage.  http://www.fs.usda.gov/chugach/
Chugach National Forest is operated by the US Forest Service (not National Park Service) – rustic cabins are available for rental for those doing overnight backpacking trips – see website for information.  Prince William Sound is accessible from Whittier, Alaska (accessible by car or train) 1 hr drive from Anchorage.  Boat tours, fishing, and the Alaska Ferry to Valdez, Cordova available from here.
Alaska Railroad does day trips from Anchorage down to Seward (go early in the morning, come back late at night) – and day trip excursions to Spencer Glacier, and Whittier.
Destination:  Hatcher Pass, located outside Palmer/Wasilla Alaska – another great area for alpine hiking, there is a great lodge here to stay in smaller rustic cabins for the night – also backcountry camping.  There is a well-preserved old gold mine in the park as well that you can visit. http://dnr.alaska.gov/parks/units/indmine.htm
Alternative Transportation Options:
Alaska Marine Highway System  – The Ferry
Alaska Railroad – access to the train is available at both the Anchorage and Fairbanks airports
Fishing – August is ‘Silver’ or Coho Salmon season – a great deal of options all along the Kenai Peninsula – mainly from Seward to Soldotna, OR north on the way to Denali.
Halibut are also in season – many many fishing charters available out of Seward, Alaska and Homer, Alaska
Permits are required  http://www.adfg.alaska.gov/
Other Destinations/Recommendations:
– Talkeetna, Alaska
The town’s mayor is a cat (Mr. Stubbs) – this is a great quirky Alaska town full of climbers preparing for summiting Denali.  Great sightseeing/flight tours out of Talkeetna that will take you up and around the mountain.  Talkeetna is about 100  miles / 2 hr drive north of Anchorage, on the way to Denali, and on the way to Fairbanks.  The Alaska Railroad stops here.  Talkeetna has great views of Denali on a clear day, and the Alaska Range, the town sits on the large Susitna River.  Many B&Bs as well as the Princess Lodge are available for accommodations.
Homer, Alaska
Another quirky town, with many artists and outdoor enthusiasts.  Homer is located on Kachemak Bay, and is one of my absolute favorite places – very scenic.  Has great access to Kachemak Bay State Park – only accessible by boat taxi across the bay – you get dropped off – primitive camping facilities available, many trails and sea coves to explore.  http://dnr.alaska.gov/parks/units/kbay/kbay.htm Yurts for rent are also available across the bay.  A very beautiful place, located 230 miles south of Anchorage (approx 5 hr drive).  No train access.
Again – please contact any of us Alaskans with any questions.  I do hope my other fellow Alaskans also add to the recommendation list!
Kind regards,
Brenna Simons, Ph.D.
Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium
Liver Disease and Hepatitis Program
4315 Diplomacy Drive ANC VHP I Anchorage, Alaska 99508
(T) 907.729.1563 I (Lab) 907.729.1233 I (F) 907.729.1586

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