Every April, a tribe of snowboarders, skiers and snow-machiners gathers at the base of the Hoodoo Mountains and, for one weekend, creates the fourth-largest city in Alaska. Centered upon a race involving 90mph speeds and a fair bit of carnage, Arctic Man is a uniquely Alaskan gathering and one hell of a tailgate party.
You know about Burning Man. Now imagine the type of people that beat up the type of people that go to Burning Man. That’s Arctic Man.
“[It’s] a huge gearhead, redneck, drunken mess,” Arctic Man regular Geric Brodt says, “and an absolute great time. I highly recommend it.”
Welcome to Arctic Man. You can find it just off Alaska’s inland Richardson Highway, midway between Fairbanks and Anchorage, at Summit Lake and the base of the Hoodoo Mountains. You’ll know when you’ve reached it by the sound of throttled engines and a hovering cloud of exhaust; by the snow machines and smoke, portable stripper poles, mobile laser shows, parties in cargo trailers and massive bonfires. It’s organized around a race in which two-man teams race around five miles assisted by both gravity and high-octane gasoline, reaching speeds nearing 90 mph. But the party, for many, has become the main attraction…