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  • Day13

    Touring Valdez

    May 28, 2018 in the United States ⋅ ☁️ 46 °F

    Today was spent touring around the town of Valdez. We visited the Solomon Gulch Hatchery located across the bay. Not much was going on as the time for spawning of salmon is not right. The best time is July through September. During this time, bears, sea gulls and sea otters can be seen feeding on the fish. It was built to make sure sufficient numbers of salmon return each year. The facility incubates, rear and release 230 pink salmon and 2 million coho. (Photo 1)

    The 1964 earthquake also hit Valdez. In fact, the tsunamis that occurred after the earthquake demolished the town. The original town of Valdez was actually four miles west of the current town location. The original townsite was condemned because of the ground being unstable so in 1967 the entire town was relocated to its current location - 52 buildings were moved and the rest were razed. You can still see where the streets were and they have markers where buildings were. Photo 2 was where the hotel was and photo 4 is where the post office was. The population now is around 4500 who work for the city, the oil industry, tourism, fishing or the transportation and shipping industry.

    Our next stop was to Glacier View Park and lake. As you can see the lake is still slightly frozen so you could not get to the Valdez Glacier. (Photo 5 and note in photo 6 how you see the reflection of the mountain surrounding the lake). On the way to Glacier View Park you pass the Valdez Municipal Airport. We stopped in and other than private planes there is only one airlines, Ravn Airlines, that service this area.

    We did a short hike on the Dock Point Trail. Parts of the trail give you a view of Harbor Cove and the Port of Valdez. The pink flowers are called Dwarf Fireweed and are also called River Beauty. The yellow flowers are called American Skunk Cabbage as they give off a skunky-odor when blooming although we didn't notice a smell.

    We stopped off at the local grocery store to replenish- it was a Safeway. That seems to be one store that is found in almost every town. Food tends to be a little expensive - a half gallon of milk: $5.29; lettuce: $2.99; radishes: $2.99; onion: $1.74
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