United States
Valdez

Here you’ll find travel reports about Valdez. Discover travel destinations in the United States of travelers writing a travel blog on FindPenguins.

9 travelers at this place:

  • Day14

    More on Valdez

    May 29 in the United States

    Today we visited two of the museums in town to learn some of the history of Valdez.

    In 1897 gold seekers came to Alaska to follow the "All American Route" (instead of going through Canada) over the Valdez Glacier into the interior of Alaska. A tent city sprang up at the head of the bay, thus forming the city of Valdez. Prior to that the territory belonged to the Chugach, an Alaskan Native people in the region of the Prince William Sound. Prince William Sound was originally named Sandwich Sound, after the Earl of Sandwich by Captain Cook in 1779. Editors of Cook's maps renamed the Sound to Prince William Sound after Prince William IV. IN 1790 Spanish explorer Salvador Fidalgo was sent to Alaska to investigate Russian involvement and to establish claim in the area. There is a street named after Fidalgo. The port of Valdez was named after Antonio Valdés y Fernández Bazán a Spanish Navy Minister in 1790.

    In October 1980 the luxury cruise ship MS Prisendam was enroute to Japan, having cruised the inside passage way from Vancouver, put out a distress call as they had a fire that started in the engine room and was spreading. It was determined to abandon ship. The US Coast Guard and a tanker near by came to rescue and bring the passengers and crew to Valdez. One life boat was lost for 12 hours but was found. It is on display at the museum. There was a pilot, Bob Reeve, who became a famous Alaskan bush pilot. He his supposed to be the first to but skies on the wheels of is plane to be able to land in the snow (photo 2 & 3). The other museum was all about the damage done to the town by the earthquake and tsunami. Photo 4 shows what the intersection looks like today - photo 5 show what the intersection looked like before the damage (see where the red VW bus is). Photo 6 is part of a house that was an actual home in the original town.

    Photo 9 is the Valdez Marine Highway Terminal. Alaska is over 650,000 square miles and much of that has no road access. The primary forms of transportation in areas without roads are by air or sea, so the Alaska Marine Highway is a big part of the 'highway system.' It is such a unique set of routes that is has been designated as a National Scenic Byway and an All American Road, the only marine route with this distinction.
    With its southernmost port in Bellingham, WA, the Alaska Marine Highway extends more than 3,500 miles to Dutch Harbor, with over 30 stops along the way.
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  • Day12

    Valdez, Alaska

    May 27 in the United States

    We decided to go to Valdez today instead of staying in Glenallen another day. Before I describe our trip I wanted to show a picture of what sunset looks like. The first picture was taken at 11:15pm. Sunset was 10:55pm and sunrise was 4:32am. We talked with a local who said it only gets 'somewhat dark' between midnight and 2:00am. In the winter it is only light out between 10:00am and 1:00pm!

    From Glenallen we headed south on the Richardson Highway, Alaska's oldest major Highway. This road runs from Valdez to Fairbanks in the interior. We picked it up about halfway. You can see the Trans-Alaska Oil Pipeline along the way but I'll talked about it more later. The Richardson Highway began as a gold rush trail. In 1910 the road was upgraded to allow cars. There is also a glacier that you can go to off of this road but unfortunately due to the visitor's parking lot still covered in snow, we could not stop to visit. Yes, snow! We were so surprised to see snow on this route. In fact, when going through Thompson Pass we had snow flurries and low visibility. The elevation is only 2720 feet. Once through the pass, the snow was gone. Valdez has a long-standing reputation for great snow - up to 900 - 1000 inches of snow! After Thompson Pass you drive through Keystone Canyon, about 10 miles north of Valdez. This Canyon has waterfalls which are created from melting snow run-off. We passed two popular waterfalls - Bridal Veil Falls (photo 9) and Horsetail Fall (photo10).Read more

  • Day13

    Touring Valdez

    May 28 in the United States

    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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You might also know this place by the following names:

Valdez, فالديز, Valdes, والدز، آلاسکا, VDZ, バルディーズ, Валдиз, भाल्देज, 99686, Валдіз, والدیز، الاسکا, 瓦尔迪兹

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