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  • Larry Miller

Early Real Estate on Job Training

As I enter my 25th year as a Real Estate Professional I realize the journey started way before the destination was in sight. On my path to building a contracting business a recession developed in Washington state. As luck would have it I got wind of a construction boom in Anchorage Alaska. So off I went with a work truck packed with tools.

Upon arrival the rumors were true and I quickly began to build a business and reputation.

In my travels around Anchorage I met a couple of guys, Chris an architect and Dick a North Slope worker. Chris knew of the Remote Parcel Staking coming in January. Basically a give away of state owned land. The task to claim the land meant going to the site and produce a survey and legal description then submit the documents to the state.

This meant taking Compass readings, measure the property lines, and flagging the corners. Write all this information down and return to the state office for filing a claim of ownership. Being that this was in January 10th of 1982 the temperature was in the teens and dropping lower at sun down, 2 PM. Daylight was short by the time we got two lots staked out.

Starting the process toward the 3rd lot, thrashing out the brush and taking the measurements for quite some time it began to feel like we were not going to make it around to the starting point. We decided to turn back and follow the trail back to the snow machine. At this point we are all very cold with signs of frost bite setting in.

We piled on the machine and the sled and headed out to cross the big lake of Papoose twins. Seeing that there was a tent camp with a couple of guys and a fire we stopped in to say hello. They were very accommodating and we enjoyed the fire and a couple of stories then headed out across the lake to catch the trail. I'm on the sled and at some point water is coming off the paddle of the snow machine. I yelled out to the guys but within seconds we are bogged down and stuck in 12 inches of slush on top of the ice. We tried to pull the machine out but unsuccessful. Knowing that the situation was seriously dangerous we decide to walk back the two miles to the tent camp. To say the least we were very motivated hikers.

Once across that Lake we got warmed up a bit then hopped on our new friends two machines. With the extra help we were able to pull our machine out of the slush and get back on our way. The experience of nighttime in the wilderness is incredible the sparkles in the trees look like eyes and your imagination takes over.

I’m riding on the sled pulled by the snow machine and keeping my eyes on the trail. I see something shiny in the trail ahead. So I reached for it and was able to pick it up.

The prize for this adventure is a six-pack ring with 3 cans of frozen Miller beers on it how appropriate for 3 guys who now realize we had a life-threatening experience. Back at the truck we loaded up the gear and made it back to town to enjoy those beers now thawed.

The adventure of acquiring this property which I still own today was priceless.







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