Thursday, March 21, 2013

Day 5 Of Our Alaska Adventure, March 20th

Today is my first full day in Valdez.  We woke up and ate breakfast downstairs at a little buffet.

Then we took a drive outside of town to Worthington Glacier.
Dad and I walked out to Worthington Glacier State Recreation site.  It was on the road outside of Valdez.  It was really windy and cold.  I didn't even last that long. My Dad walked almost all the way back to the glacier.  We could see the bright blue ice of the glacier.
I had fun reading all about the Worthington Glacier on the Alaska Geographic website. 
We drove up over Thompson Pass.  This is a pass or path through the Chugach Mountains.  Thompson pass is the snowiest place in Alaska.

My Dad read that once in December 29, 1955, Thompson Pass got 62 inches of snow in one day.
We went to the Tsaina Lodge thinking we would eat lunch there but it wasn't open.  In this picture you can see the tops of helicopters past the trucks.  These helicopters drop skiers off at the top of the mountains so they can ski. They are called "Extreme Skiers" or "Heli'skiing". We have seen a lot of extreme skiers at our hotel and around town.
When we were at the resort, a person came up and asked my Mom if they could get a ride to Valdez.  Mom said, "Ask my husband" and Dad said "Yes".  So Mom, Dad, and I took Gregory and Mary Ann from Vancouver, Canada to Valdez.  We've never picked up hitchhikers before but they were super nice.
Back to Valdez we went past a guy climbing up the frozen water falls.  There was another guy above him in the trees.  I think they were having a race or something.

These are called the Horsetail Falls and the other falls right up the road are called Bridal Veil Falls.  They were totally frozen and the ice was bright blue underneath the snowy white color.
 After we dropped off our new friends, we went to the Valdez Museum.
There are two old boats on the outside of the museum.  
You can read all about the Valdez Museum at this website.  It has tons of great information.
We learned about the oil spill in Valdez in 1989.  The oil tanker was in Alaska and there were two islands....someone said "Go to the left to miss the bergy bits (small icebergs)" and they went too much to the left and the oil tanker hit a rock.  It burst and let out tons of oil.  
The oil damaged the otters and the environment.  It went a long way.  It took four years to get most of the oil cleaned up but there is still lots of it left in Valdez even today. 
In the museum there was a famous bar that they had to move after the earthquake in 1964. The Good Friday Earthquake was the strongest and longest in North America history.  
We liked seeing the pictures of how they use to get through Thompson Pass.  
Last night we ate at our hotel again.  They had no vanilla ice cream for my root beer float so I had chocolate instead.  It was still good.

Tomorrow we are going to meet Mom's friend Barb who was the elementary librarian in Valdez just like her. We might even get to ride in an airplane to see everything.

I can't wait.

1 comment:

  1. I love experiencing this trip through your eyes, Hagan. Thanks for taking us along with you, your mom, and your dad :-)