Don't know too much about Ft. Richardson but I was stationed at Elmendorf AFB and it was the best assignment I ever had. I worked at the hospital there and that's the same hospital that you'll use. One of the things real estate people tell you is location, location, location and as far as Alaska goes, being in Anchorage is "the place to be". If you like outdoor activities you are close enough that you can do all the hunting and fishing and hiking and camping that you can handle. However, if you hate doing outdoor stuff, you are right in Anchorage which is the biggest city in the state and with a population of about half a million people they have EVERYTHING and in many ways it seems like a much larger town. There are lots of different cultures there because you are half way to Asia. Lots of awesome restaurants and tons of bars to go to. When I was there it was fairly easy to get space A flights to Japan and South Korea as well as back to CONUS. Also, don't believe all the BS people tell you about Alaska being 50 below zero all the time. It is very cold in the interior of the state but Anchorage is way South and down by the ocean so you don't have those really extreme temperatures there. I live in Wisconsin and there are many times that it is colder here than it is in Anchorage. Sorry that I don't know about the Fort Richardson part of the base but I really didn't go over there that much. Have a great time up there. I think you will like it a lot!!
I'm currently stationed at Ft. Richardson. Best advice I can give is to find a hobby besides drinking. It's a tight knit community military wise and civilian wise. Everyone knows everyone up here. And if you take action you can find just about anything you would want to do up here. Summers are gorgeous and you'll have sunlight for like 20 hours a day. Winter is the opposite but snowboarding is a blast. I've been here 4.5 years and it's been freaking awesome. Your experience once you get here will be what you make it so remember to be social and get out and do things.
As I mentioned earlier, Richardson is compact, anywhere on base is literally walking distance. As CPT Speaks pointed out, you are also part of Joint Base Elmendorf and it's facilities. As Elmendorf is a large Air Force facility, you have access to some really excellent services, including medical care. Even if you are not a outdoors type, Anchorage is very close and is very much a city. But, having only 500k residents, has a feel much like Milwaukee, only with more snow. If you are an outdoors type, you are about to view heaven! 1/2 an hour outside Richardson puts you in rugged forest, mountain, river and glacial areas. There is literally no outdoor activity you can't engage in.
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