Chasing Alaska’s Northern Lights

Author: , May 22nd, 2013
by Eyal Feldman, Boy Butter Blog
Email Eyal | Visit the Boy Butter Blog Website

Visit the Purple Roofs Alaska page

Alaska - Boy Butter BlogWhen people think of Alaska they immediately think of the arctic, snow, ice, and a general freezing cold. Well, when you tell people that you are going to Alaska in February they immediately think you are crazy.

I have travelled the world and seen tons of different countries and geographical areas, but nothing compares and nowhere I have been comes close to the uniqueness and rugged natural beauty that is Alaska. The sheer size of Alaska is so big it is difficult to grasp, it is 1/3 the size of the land area of the entire 48 states, or about twice the size of Texas.

Not only am I inspired and drawn to the extreme locals and geography, but as an astronomy aficionado the main astronomical phenomena I am chasing here on this Alaska adventure is the Aurora Borealis or Northern Lights. The Aurora Borealis is a natural brightly colored occurrence as the Sun’s radiation hits the Earth’s magnetic field a beautiful display of charged particles light up the sky in our upper atmosphere, only visible near the poles and the best time of year to witness it is during the winter time when the nights are longer and chance of seeing the Aurora are the greatest, but you better pray for clear skies or it can be completely obscured.

The first stop on this arctic adventure is Anchorage, the most popular place to start your introduction into this sub-arctic wonderland. Surrounded by impressive snow covered mountains, Anchorage is a spread out bustling town of 300,000 out of Alaska’s population of 730,000 folks with plenty of things to do, places to go and people to meet.

By far Alaska’s largest and most sophisticated city, Anchorage is situated in a truly spectacular location surrounded by permanently snow-covered peaks and volcanoes of the Alaska Range. To the west of the city, part of the craggy Chugach Range is actually within the eastern edge of the municipality, and the Talkeetna and Kenai ranges are visible to the north and south. On clear days Mt. McKinley looms on the northern horizon, and two arms of Cook Inlet embrace the town’s western and southern borders.

Staying at the comfortable and classy Copper Whale Inn, a gay friendly bed and breakfast located conveniently in the heart of downtown Anchorage, just a short walk from the city’s restaurants, galleries, museums and attractions. One museum that I suggest is the largest museum in Alaska, The Alaska Museum of History and Art, where you can learn about Indigenous art, science, and the history of Alaska and it’s cultures.

Also a short distance away are the only two gay bars in town, Mad Myrna’s and The Raven, if you want to see a super hot bartender, please make sure to ask for Chris Jones at Mad Myrna’s (oucha mcgoucha). There is also a small Gay and Lesbian Center nearby on 5th Avenue just down the road so you can inquire on all things homo-Alaskan when you get there.

The next stop on the Northern Lights adventure is to Denali National Park, home of Mount Mckinley, the tallest mountain in North America at an elevation of 20,320 feet. Then it is on to Fairbanks and the famous Chena Hot Springs, a location so famous for the Northern Lights viewing that Japanese people fly specifically to Chena Hot Springs so they can conceive a child under the Aurora as it is considered good luck for the future child. I might not be conceiving a Japanese child there but I am sure it will be enjoyable nonetheless.

Chasing Alaska’s Northern Lights

Author: , February 27th, 2013

Anchorage, AK - Eyal FeldmanLooking for something a little different for your next vacation? How about chasing the Northern Lights in Alaska? Our friend Eyal Feldman at Boy Butter Blog (yes, that Boy Butter) reports:

The sheer size of Alaska is so big it is difficult to grasp, it is 1/3 the size of the land area of the entire 48 states, or about twice the size of Texas. Not only am I inspired and drawn to the extreme locals and geography, but as an astronomy aficionado the main astronomical phenomena I am chasing here on this Alaska adventure is the Aurora Borealis or Northern Lights. The Aurora Borealis is a natural brightly colored occurrence as the Sun’s radiation hits the Earth’s magnetic field a beautiful display of charged particles light up the sky in our upper atmosphere, only visible near the poles and the best time of year to witness it is during the winter time when the nights are longer and chance of seeing the Aurora are the greatest, but you better pray for clear skies or it can be completely obscured.

Follow Eyal’s adventures at the Boy Butter Blog.

Click here for gay travel resources in Alaska.

 

Gay Travel: Out and About in Houston

Author: , February 23rd, 2012

by Eyal Feldman, owner of Boy Butter Lubricants.

Gay Houston TravelAfter my first trip to America’s fourth largest city, I found it to be a lively and stylish cosmopolitan town that effortlessly blends Western and Southern heritage and style. Houston has been one of America’s great boomtowns and is recognized worldwide for its energy industry—particularly for oil and natural gas—as well as for biomedical research and aeronautics.
The energy of the city is not just based in petroleum, but the warm and friendly people who lend their own kind of energy make it a fun place to hang and make some new friends.

Houston acts as a cultural capital bridging the South and Southwest, with some of the best museums in the country. Cultural highlights include the Menil Collection, with works by Warhol, Leger, and Picasso and is within walking distance of the Rothko Chapel. The Chapel contains 14 large-scale Mark Rothko paintings and a peaceful reflecting pool and plaza; and the Byzantine Fresco Chapel, which showcases two 13th-century frescoes rescued from war-torn Cyprus.

Not far from there is The Museum of Natural Science, with tons of educational exhibits that boasts a 25,000 square foot rainforest with butterfly garden, a 3-D IMAX theatre and a planetarium.

The downtown area is a trendy district of restaurants, clubs, shops, condos, hip hotels, and an architecturally stunning baseball stadium.  Other central Houston neighborhoods, including gay-popular Montrose and up-and-coming Midtown area are definite places to visit and spend some time. A trip here would not be complete without visiting The Galleria, the biggest shopping mall in Texas, is a must do. Just make sure you remember where you parked cause it is really really big and you can get really lost.

The Houston gay scene is centered in Montrose, an attractive neighborhood a couple of miles southwest of downtown, with a mix of early 20th-century homes and cottages and newer pockets of condos and apartments. The gayborhood’s epicenter is where Westheimer Road crosses Montrose Boulevard, and you’re within walking distance of countless gay bars and gay-friendly restaurants.

You can purchase a drink or two then if things go well maybe some Boy Butter lubricants, which you can even find at the local Walgreens pharmacy. There is a place in my heart for Houston and I can easily find myself going back again and again.

Waimea: The Grand Canyon of the Pacific

Author: , October 13th, 2011

Waimea Canyon, Kauaiby Eyal Feldman, owner and creator of Boy Butter Lubricants

One of the most popular places to visit in Kauai is the Grand Canyon of the Pacific, Waimea Canyon. From the southern resort area of the island it takes about 45 minutes to reach. Waimea is the largest canyon in the Pacific and truly a dramatic sight to behold.

The canyon is about 10 miles long and a mile wide, and more than 3,500-feet deep. It was carved thousands of years ago by rivers and floods that flowed from Mount Waialeale’s summit. The lines in the canyon walls depict different volcanic eruptions and lava flows that have occurred over the centuries.

Even though smaller than the Grand Canyon of Arizona, Waimea Canyon rivals the beauty. There are numerous lookouts and hikes offering terrific views of every aspect of this natural wonder. It is highly recommended to do this if you ever find yourself in this corner of paradise.

Reposted with permission from the Boy Butter Blog.