Alaska train heading to Skagway ©Author Adventures

Barry Lopez, Prize-winning Nature Writer

Arctic Dreams by Barry Lopez (1945-2020) won a National Book Award for non-fiction in 1986 and is a great example of informative and eloquent writing about the Far North. He was known as a sensitive writer, expert photographer, and relentless explorer. Read more about Barry Lopez and other books he authored here: According to this Barry Lopez Foundation website, this impactful he won many awards, including:

“Guggenheim, Lannan, MacDowell and National Science Foundation fellowships; Pushcart Prizes in fiction and nonfiction; the St. Francis of Assisi Award from DePaul University; the Denise Levertov Award from Image magazine; the John Hay Medal; honors from the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences, the Association of American Geographers, the New York Public Library, The Nature Conservancy, and the American Society of Magazine Editors; and was a fellow of The Explorers Club.”

The University of Alaska at Anchorage

Barry Lopez

The University of Alaska at Anchorage awarded Lopez its Honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters (2012) for his careful depiction of the Alaskan environment and the Far North beyond. Visit its website at and consider a campus visit. An extensive archive of Lopez’s works is located at Texas Tech University in Lubbock, Texas, where he was designated a “visiting scholar.” Read about it here:

George T. Harper

The University of Alaska is also home to the archives of George T. Harper (1930-2004), who wrote a one-man show entitled The Two Headed Turtle, created Blacks in America exhibits, and conducted extensive research to trace his roots back to 1803. Read about the collection here:

According to the University of Alaska at Anchorage’s Archives, Harper was honorably discharged from his service within the US Navy and as an Air Force reservist before moving to Anchorage for a position as a computer specialist with the Bureau of Land Management. He also taught figure skating at the Dimond Center Ice Chalet in Anchorage in the early 1990s when he was in his early fifties.

More About Anchorage

Anchorage is the most populated city in Alaska. A great place to find more information about the history of Alaska, complete with personal testimonies and vintage photos, can be found here:

The University of Alaska at Anchorage is the first stop on our Alaska Author Adventures Trail.

Patricia Smart