Coldfoot truck stop prepares for summer

Posted: Tuesday, May 29, 2001

BARROW (AP) -- The Coldfoot Truck Stop is 60 miles north of the Arctic Circle but that isn't keeping it from preparing for the summer rush.

''We're gearing up for the summer season, and it is exciting,'' said manager Linda Stanford, as temperatures hovered in the 20s last week.

She said the first big tour bus of the summer season is due June 1. A couple of smaller vans of tourists have already stopped by.

Sukakpak Inc. of Fairbanks bought the truck stop on May 1. The business, which was Coldfoot Services, is now Coldfoot Camp, the original name when it was a Trans-Alaska Pipeline camp. Sukakpak also owns Northern Alaska Tour Company.

Part of the changes will be a more diverse menu, but Sanford said one item won't change -- the Coldfoot ''Truckers' Special'' breakfast -- pancakes that fill the entire plate, two eggs, bacon, sausage, toast and hashbrowns.

''We also have a community of construction workers here, the folks who will be working on the road. They will be based here. And the contractor that does work for Alyeska will be here with us most of the summer. And I understand trucking is going to be pretty busy all summer. And then the tourists, we're going to be a pretty busy place all summer,'' Stanford said.

The tourists like to mingle with the truckers and miners, she said.

''We'll see a lot of the visitors that come up on the Princess buses who probably have never been to a truck stop out taking their pictures with the big rigs and talking with the truckers about the road, and how they handle hauling on the road through all the seasons,'' she said.

Another sign of summer is the number of gold miners back in the area, Sanford said, including Diamond Jim and Tahiti Bob.

''We've got probably four or five of the different mines that are setting up and getting ready to go now. They are opening their camps and hauling their fuel in,'' she said.

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