Homer is a city on the Kenai Peninsula in Southcentral Alaska and is long known as the “Halibut Fishing Capital of the World.” It is also known as the “End of the Road”. The most westerly point on the North American contiguous highway system is in nearby Anchor Point. There the road (AK 1) turns southeast and ends at the tip of the Homer Spit, a natural sandbar stretching some four miles into Kachemak Bay, at the End of the Road Park.
Homer is named after Homer Pennock, a charismatic con man who led an expedition to the area in 1896 in search of gold. They found coal instead. Pennock left the expedition, supposedly to secure more funding, and never returned. For much of the history of this area the larger settlements were those on the opposite side of Kachemak Bay. The completion of the Sterling Highway (AK 1) provided road access in 1951, causing Homer to begin expanding and overshadowing its neighbors across the water. The 1964 Good Friday Earthquake severely damaged the Homer Spit, causing portions of it to sink about six feet, destroying the road and the surrounding habitat, now known as “Mud Bay.” The US Army Corps of Engineers reconstructed the first few miles of the Spit, giving it its present appearance.
The Spit is the main tourist area and the location of the harbor, but it is not the whole town. If you only visit the Spit, you miss the town where people live and work. There are over 5,000 people in Homer, and only a dozen or so live on the Spit full-time.