The Russian Far East
The Giant Geyser, in the Valley of Geysers. Photo: Flickr, Robert Nunn

The east coast of Russia is far out of mind for Alaskans most of the time, but it’s not that far away physically and the geography, culture and history of the region are deeply intertwined with ours. You can even go there for an adventure if you are ready for something completely new. The Russian Far East was walled off from Alaska by the Cold War for decades, but in the 1990s that Ice Curtain fell, and some lucky Alaskans had amazing adventures on the far side of the Bering Sea. We’ll hear some of those stories on today’s show, with a traveler who spent time in Kamchatka and another who boated and dog mushed in Chukotka. And, although many of those opportunities closed years ago, we’ll also get into how you can arrange a trip today.



HOST: Charles Wohlforth


  • Erika Monahan – Assistant Professor of History at the University of New Mexico, author of The Merchants of Siberia
  • Mark Dudley – with InterPacific Aviation and Marketing
  • Sue Steinacher – musher and adventurer


BROADCAST: Thursday, June 08, 2017. 2:00 pm – 3:00 p.m. AKT

REPEAT BROADCAST:  Thursday, June 15, 2017. 8:00 – 9:00 p.m. AKT

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Eric Bork, or you can just call him “Bork” because everybody else does, is the FM Operations Manager for KSKA-FM. He oversees the day-to-day operations of the FM broadcast. He produces and edits episodes of Outdoor Explorer, the Alaska-focused outdoors program. He also maintains the web posts for that show. You may have heard him filling in for Morning Edition or hosting All Things Considered and can still find him operating the soundboard for any of the live broadcast programs.

After escaping the Detroit area when he was 18, Bork made it up to the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, where he earned a degree in Communications/Radio Broadcasting from Northern Michigan University. He spent time managing the college radio station, working for the local NPR affiliate, and then in top 40 radio in Michigan before coming to Alaska to work his first few summers. After then moving to Chicago, it only took five years to convince him to move back to Alaska in 2010. When not involved in great radio programming he’s probably riding a bicycle, thinking about riding bicycles, dreaming about bikes, reading a book, or planning the next place he’ll travel to. Only two continents left to conquer!

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