Saturday, July 10, 2010

On to Valdez

A few days ago I wrote a blog about moving from a place on the GlennAllen Highway to Valdez, but I didn't include any pictures. So, here is one Helen took along the highway while we were walking the dogs. In addition to the pretty flowers in the foreground, there are mountains way out back.

Further along and much closer to Valdez, we came across Worthington Glacier. I didn't realize earlier, but the glacier we were camped near the night before comes from the same ice field as Worthington. In fact, Matanuska Glacier is just another of many glaciers born from that ice field, including Valdez, Yale, Harvard, and more. Also interesting is that some glaciers are receding, some are extending, and some are stable. Global Warming???? I'm not so sure anymore.

Passing through the deep chasm on the approach to Valdez are a number of awesome falls. The one below is Bridal Veil Falls.

When we got into our campground, I noticed the kid in the next space putting away some fishing tackle. He was kind enough to tell me exactly where he was catching fish. I took a ride over there that night and found tons of salmon and two tons of fishermen. Also, there were a dozen or more huge sea lions feeding on the salmon, some only fifty feet from where I was standing. Of course I had no camera. I went back the next day and found the tide at dead low, as shown below.

The flat you see above is all underwater at high tide. This time I had my camera and my fishing tackle, but the only area containing fish was that area to the far right, which is part of the fish hatchery and thus, off limits. The only ones having a jolly good time are below.

This is what everyone is after, a pink salmon or humpy. I have no idea how this poor soul ended up high and dry, but he didn't appear to be damaged. Several salmon in the area bore the marks of a very close encounter with a sea lion.

I went back again after 10:00 PM and got my limit of six fish in a short time. Then it was time to clean the catch and return home. After filleting two, my fingers were numb and I was having trouble holding my knife. I figured the heck with it. I took it to a fish processor where I had them all filleted, vacuum packed in plastic, and flash frozen. Now the freezer is full! It costs two fortunes to have some fish shipped home but I'd like to continue to fish. The processing plant accepts fish for charities, so that's where the rest will go.

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