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If you like extremes, Alaska is the place for you. The state is known as a land of extreme contrasts because it has frozen glaciers as well as hot springs, temperatures as low as -80 degrees F and as high as 100 degrees F, and isolated villages as well as modern cities. Alaska is the coldest state. In Fairbanks, the high temperature in January averages only -2 degrees F.

The length of daylight is also extreme. The summer sun shines for almost 20 hours a day in Alaska. At Point Barrow, the sun does not set from May 10 to August 2. That's why Alaska is known as the "Land of the Midnight Sun." However, during part of the winter, there is constant darkness at Point Barrow.

How about some more extremes? Mount McKinley, at 20,320 feet above sea level, is the highest mountain in the country. Alaska also has more coastline than any other state.