The doorbell rang the other day, just as the sun was sinking into evening. When I answered, I found a UPS truck driving away and a box of books on my doorstep. Inside were shiny new author copies of the sixth edition of Globe Pequot’s OFF THE BEATEN PATH: ALASKA.

There’s good reason why this travel guide has become a perennial favorite. The Milepost is great for road trip details, but where else will you find out about gems like Alaska’s Boardwalk Lodge, tucked away in the stunning beauty of Prince of Wales Island, or the new VIP Restaurant in Bethel, of all places. Building on the solid foundation laid by Melissa DeVaughn, I had a whole lot of fun revising and updating the guide last summer.

Scientists say that new experiences light up the reward system in our brains. When we go new places and do new things, dopamine and norephinephtem rush in and make us feel fabulous. Eckhart Tolle, author of A NEW EARTH, explains the satisfaction differently. He says new experiences stun us into shutting off our egos and basking in the reality of our inner space, at least for a spell.

Whatever the theory, there’s a lot to be said for getting off the beaten path, and there’s plenty of off-path exploration to be done in Alaska. Whether you’re a long-time resident or just planning a quick visit, OFF THE BEATEN PATH: ALASKA is a great way to discover the people and places that make our land great.

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