Chicken humor

Chicken is a small village located at milepost 66.8 on the Taylor Highway in Alaska. As one of the few places along this highway where fuel is available, it is a popular rest stop.

Local legend is that the town was named after a group of miners decided to name it Ptarmigan after the local birds, but unable to agree on the spelling finally decided "Hell, let's just call it Chicken" (the nickname for ptarmigan).


Founded in 1886 as a gold rush town, Chicken served a remote river valley with almost 400 settlers by 1903. The Pedro Dredge, built in 1938 to mine Pedro Creek north of Fairbanks, was moved to Chicken in 1959 and used to mine 55,000 ounces of gold over the next dozen years. As the amount of remaining gold dwindled, commercial mining operators left; the Dredge was moved to its present location at the Chicken Gold Camp in 1998. While operation is now largely seasonal, a thousand acres of mining claims along the Chicken Creek remain open for temporary lease (days or weeks) to recreational part-time prospectors looking to pan for the last few bits of gold.


 Climate Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Daily highs (°F) -12 -2 21 41 57 70 71 64 52 29 4 -7
Nightly lows (°F) -30 -23 -11 11 29 39 41 36 26 8 -14 -24
Precipitation (in) 0.4 0.3 0.3 0.2 1.2 2.0 2.7 1.9 1.4 0.7 0.7 0.6

   Data from NOAA (1981-2010)

Get in

The vast majority of visitors arrive by car along the gravel Taylor Highway. The road is not maintained year-round, so travel by road may be impossible once snow falls. The town also has a small dirt runway (IATA: CKX) located 0.8 miles east of the highway that is accessible to private planes year-round.

Get around

There are 3 businesses in Chicken: "Chicken Gold Camp & Outpost", "Downtown Chicken" and the "Goldpanner". The first two are located a short distance off of the highway on the Airport Road spur road. The Goldpanner gift shop is located along the Taylor highway.

Given the town's small size (the official population was 38 in 2002) the most obvious way to get around is by foot. Those unwilling to walk the short distances between the town's three businesses may want to ask themselves what they're doing in the wilds of Alaska!


Chicken's dredge




"Downtown" Chicken




Chicken Post Office

There is one small post office in Chicken, Alaska 99732 which receives mail twice weekly. As Chicken is off the grid, there is no telephone exchange or other utility service in the area. Any Internet access, presumably, is via satellite. Internet telephony may suffice to get a call through, using phone numbers from some other community closer to the beaten path.

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This article is issued from Wikivoyage - version of the Monday, December 07, 2015. The text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share Alike but additional terms may apply for the media files.