Pilgrim Hot Springs: A Master Plan: Bringing together geothermal energy, history and Iñupiaq culture to create a sustainable and economically viable eco-tourism destination to the Seward Peninsula, Alaska
PublisherThe University of Arizona.
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AbstractPilgrim Hot Springs is a historic landscape in northwestern Alaska on the Seward Peninsula. It is located 60 miles north of Nome, the end location of the famous Iditarod dogsled race. Once a Catholic orphanage, today it is a hot springs soaking destination for those who know of its existence and who are able to access it. Recently, under the ownership of Unaataq, LLC, a consortium of seven Native corporations and regional nonprofits, plans to renovate the site are just beginning. This master’s report assists Unaataq, LLC, in the design of a Master Plan to reinvigorate Pilgrim Hot Springs using ecological, historical, and cultural sensitivity to drive the design. This Master Plan uses the concept of integrating recreation, conservation, and education to create a viable economic ecotourism base camp from which other tourism opportunities based on the Seward Peninsula can be accessed. Pilgrim Hot Springs will provide creative options for year round human comforts and recreation, will sustainably harvest geothermal energy to operate off the grid, and create agricultural opportunities for the resort and the local native communities for year round consumption and economic gain. Methods for investigation include: case reviews of existing similar projects, site visit and landscape analysis, and informal interviews.