approximately 55 miles
In this week’s Maphead, Ken Jennings explores the tiny outpost of Alaska that really can see Russia from its backyard.
Can you drive a car from Alaska to Russia ? No, you cannot drive a car from Alaska to Russia because there is no land connecting the two. This also means that there is no road, no immigration offices and no way to legally exit or enter any of the countries.
Yes. Russia and Alaska are divided by the Bering Strait, which is about 55 miles at its narrowest point. At their closest, these two islands are a little less than two and a half miles apart, which means that, on a clear day, you can definitely see one from the other.
The Bering Strait tunnel was estimated to cost between $10 billion and $12 billion, while the entire project was estimated to cost $65 billion. Shortly after, the Russian government approved the construction of the $65 billion Siberia- Alaska rail and tunnel across the Bering Strait.
The purchase of Alaska in 1867 marked the end of Russian efforts to expand trade and settlements to the Pacific coast of North America , and became an important step in the United States rise as a great power in the Asia-Pacific region.
Cox is perhaps best known for swimming 2 hour 5 minutes in the Bering Strait on 7 August 1987, from the island of Little Diomede in Alaska to Big Diomede, then part of the Soviet Union, where the water temperature averaged around 43 to 44 °F (6 to 7 °C).
Little Diomede Island is located about 25 miles (40 km) west from the mainland, in the middle of the Bering Strait. It is only 0.6 miles (0.97 km) from the International Date Line and about 2.4 miles (3.9 km) from the Russian island of Big Diomede .
“Ice Curtain” border During the Cold War, the Bering Strait marked the border between the Soviet Union and the United States. The Diomede Islands—Big Diomede (Russia) and Little Diomede (US)—are only 3.8 km ( 2.4 mi ) apart.
In March 2006, Bushby and French adventurer Dimitri Kieffer crossed the Bering Strait on foot, having to take a roundabout 14-day route across a frozen 150-mile (240 km) section to cross the 58-mile (93 km) wide strait from Alaska to Siberia.
The Bering sea , near the chain of the Aleutian Islands, is one of the most intense patches of ocean on Earth. Strong winds, freezing temperatures, and icy water are normal conditions. The combination makes for some of the most ferocious waves on the planet, where the water can rise and fall 30 feet on a normal day.
A group of intrepid explorers have made history by driving from Russia to Canada across the North Pole. The group of eight Russians travelled more than 2,485 miles (4,000km) in 70 days in specially created buses across one of the most forbidding parts of the planet.
IT IS EASY to forget—if you ever knew—that Russia and the United States are less than three miles apart, across the icy waters of the Bering Strait (see map). From America’s Little Diomede Island, which is indeed very little, you can cheerily wave or glower, depending on your attitude, at Russia’s Big Diomede Island.
In contrast, the American island of Little Diomede has no government or military presence. Directly facing Russia is a village with a population of fewer than 80 people, who live in huts clustered up the steep and rocky hillside. It is one of the most remote and isolated settlements in the US.
The United States shares international land borders with two nations: The Canada– United States border to the north of the Contiguous United States and to the east of Alaska. The Russia – United States maritime boundary was defined by a disputed agreement covering the Bering Sea, Bering Strait, and Arctic Ocean.