Wild Adventures

Heli-skiing Get a local operator to drop you amid 2000 sq miles of snowy wilderness in the Chugach Mountains.

Wilderness Kayaking Rent your own kayak and get a water taxi to the Columbia Glacier, or take a guided trip.

Rafting Shoot the class III rapids of the Lowe River through the Keystone Canyon.

Shoup Bay Trail Take this rugged scantly marked trail out of Valdez to one of several USFS cabins and a glacier.


Shoup Bay Trail A coastline-hugging trail through marsh and brush to a tidewater glacier.

Mineral Creek Trail Follow an old dirt road through a land of abandoned mines and weeping waterfalls.

Keystone Canyon Several trails lead through this narrow canyon following the routes of erstwhile rail speculators, bandits and gold hunters.

John Hunter Memorial Trail Easy climb on a wide dirt road near the end of the Alaska Pipeline to a peaceful reservoir.


Columbia Glacier Prince William Sound’s frozen giant is one of the fastest-moving ice floes in the world.

Valdez Glacier Visit the glacier that gold hunters trudged up in the 1890s; the ice still coughs up their belongings.

Shoup Glacier You can hike from town to this steep tidal glacier that spills out into an eponymous bay.

Worthington Glacier Take a hike on this rapidly retreating glacier 27 miles east of Valdez on the Richardson Hwy.


Valdez Museum Lovingly curated history of Valdez’ survivor spirit laid out in thoughtful and creative detail.

Old Valdez Eerie site where Valdez stood before the 1964 earthquake; various interpretive boards explain its history and geography.

Valdez Museum Annex Fascinating scale model of Old Valdez, with a film showing footage of the earthquake that destroyed it.

Maxine & Jesse Whitney Museum Private collection of Alaska Native artifacts in a classy modern museum.

Gold Rush Days Annual celebration of Valdez’ rugged history, including hikes along old gold-rush routes.