Alaska legalized pot this year and is the first state to have pot cafes where people can consume marijuana. Mark Thiessen/AP hide caption

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The Capitol Christmas Tree is unloaded from a truck following its journey from the Chugach National Forest in Alaska to Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C. After it is secured in the ground, the tree will be decorated with thousands of ornaments, handcrafted by children and others from Alaska communities. Yuri Gripas/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

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A field near harvest time at Meyers Farm in Bethel, Alaska, can now grow crops like cabbage outside in the ground, due to rising temperatures. Daysha Eaton/KYUK hide caption

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Anchorage dental hygienist Victoria Cronquist pays $1,600 a month for a health insurance policy that covers four people in her family. Next year, she says, the rate is set to jump to $2,600 a month. Annie Feidt/APRN hide caption

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ShellNo flotilla participants float near the Polar Pioneer oil drilling rig during demonstrations in May against the presence of the first of two Royal Dutch Shell oil rigs in the Port of Seattle. David Ryder/Getty Images hide caption

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Outreach coordinator Sonny Weahkee (left) talks with a restaurant customer about health insurance for Native Americans in Shiprock, N.M., in early August. Heidi de Marco/Kaiser Health News hide caption

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Valerie Davidson, Alaska's health and social services commissioner, drives her 1983 Chevy truck to pick up salmon for a dinner party for 50 people. Annie Fiedt/Alaska Public Media hide caption

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President Obama makes his way across the tarmac Monday to greet well-wishers upon arrival at Elmendorf Air Force Base in Anchorage, Alaska. Mandel Ngan/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

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President Obama is renaming Alaska's Mount McKinley in an effort to strengthen cooperation between the government and Alaska Native tribes. The peak is returning to its traditional name, Denali. Al Grillo/AP hide caption

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Smoke billows from a forest fire in southern Saskatchewan, Canada, in late June. Thousands of Canadians have been forced to evacuate their homes because of wildland fires. AP hide caption

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Alaskans attend a rally in Anchorage for Medicaid expansion. Jonathan Casurella/Alaska Public Media hide caption

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Tim Meyers on his four-acre vegetable farm in southwestern Alaska. Behind him: an endless sea of tundra, and a glimpse of the town of Bethel. Eugenie Frerichs for NPR hide caption

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Leaders of the Alaska Cannabis Club share a joint at their medical marijuana dispensary in Anchorage. On Tuesday, Alaska became the third state in the nation to legalize recreational marijuana use. Mark Thiessen/AP hide caption

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In the dog mushing world, 44-year-old Lance Mackey is like Michael Jordan. The sled dog racing veteran returns to the Yukon Quest this year. Katie Orlinsky for NPR hide caption

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Sled dogs prefer below-zero weather for running, says musher Cody Strathe. Some mushers now train at night, when it's colder. Courtesy Yukon Quest hide caption

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Environment

Climate Change Puts Alaska's Sled Dog Races On Thin Ice

Warm temperatures and dwindling snow have shaken even the toughest mushers. Alaskans are worried about the future of their state sport.

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Begich Towers is located at the edge of town. Photographer Reed Young wanted to capture the dry-docked boat in the foreground. "You see a ton of boats that are just scattered all over," he says. Reed Young/The California Sunday Magazine hide caption

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