Located along the Yukon River, 20 miles west of St. Mary’s, this small Eskimo-Yup’ik village of approximately 700 inhabitants keeps a relatively low profile. Seldom does it make the urban newspapers.
The history books say Mountain Village was first established with the opening of a general store in 1908. Prior to that it had only been a summer fishing camp. Local lore attributes the founding of Mountain Village to a Yup’ik man by the name of Chekohak. The original name of the village was Asa'carsarmiut, which means “beginning of the mountains to the north and to the south,” a reference to the 500 ft Azachorok Mountain that the village sits at the base of. This mountain, though nowhere near as massive as anything in the Alaska Range, was the first mountain encountered by those traveling up the lower Yukon River.
After the village was established in 1908, residents of Liberty Landing and Johnny’s Place immigrated to the area and a Covenant Church missionary school was built. In 1923, a post office was built, and since it was a fishing village, a salmon saltery was opened in 1956 and a cannery in 1964. All three have since been shut down, seemingly ceasing all viable commerce. Mountain Village, however, in 1996, was selected as the headquarters for the Lower Yukon School District, fixture in the community that helps maintain its population and economy. The population relies heavily on subsistence, which includes salmon, moose and waterfowl.
The climate is primarily continental with temperatures that range from -44 to 80 °F and an annual precipitation of about 16 inches, with snowfall of 44 inches. The village is accessible by riverboat or barge from mid-June to October, and has summer road access to Pitka's Point, Andreafsky and St. Mary's.