Family of Explorers
When a mutual friend notified me yesterday that Alaska adventurers Bretwood “Hig” Higman and Erin McKittrick might be looking for some transportation while visiting Anchorage, I jumped at the opportunity to meet them.
Erin and Hig, as they are known, are the founders of the organization Ground Truth Trekking which provides a unique education on Alaska’s resource issues through hands-on exploration. Erin and Hig, along with the other organization members, combine their travels with exhaustive research, offering comprehensive, science-based coverage of issues like mining, climate change, Alaska fisheries management, energy options, etc…They frequently debunk myths on both sides of the various arguments.
However, it’s their ambitious journeys and uniquely simple lifestyle that seems to get most of the attention.
Erin’s book, “A Long Trek Home,” documents their 4000-mile journey in 2007-2008 from Puget Sound to the Bering Sea — also documented in the movie ‘Journey On the Wild Coast.” The couple has continued their journeys which now include two toddler children (son Katmai and daughter Lituya). (A list an description of each journey can be found on their website.) When not hiking the wilds of Alaska, they live in a yurt on a stretch of land in Seldovia, along with both of their mothers in their own yurts on the same homestead. Their more recent journeys and family life will be chronicled in Erin’s new book coming out later this year.
This trip to Anchorage is not a “come-and-stock-up-in-the-big-city” visit from rural Alaska. Erin, Hig and the kids are walking the Cook Inlet area…”Tracing the Heart of Alaska.” From March through July, they will be traveling around the Inlet area and asking residents about Alaska’s future. Erin explains in this little video I took with my IPad Mini at Middle Way Cafe. (Includes gratuitous child cuteness.)