Set on the Richardson Highway just outside town, this small cabin is a great spot for in-depth information and gorgeous scenery. Operated by the U.S. Forest Service and open only in summertime, it’s staffed by guides who can help you understand the area. It also features some fun exhibits.
It’s worth stopping by just to take in the natural setting. Behind the cabin is a picturesque waterfall that you can walk to along a short path. There’s also a stream that runs thick with pink and chum salmon when they return each summer to spawn. Thanks to a footbridge over the stream and the clear Alaskan water, it’s easy to see the fish. (The best viewing is from mid-July through October.) You may also see black bears, who come to feast on the fish.
And just across the Richardson Highway, you’ll find the intertidal wetlands of the Valdez “Duck Flats.” This is an important habitat for a variety of migrating birds, and it provides a nesting area for ducks and geese. Bring your binoculars!
Valdez, AK 99686
- The cabin is located at Mile .5 of the Richardson Highway, just a 2-minute drive from downtown.
- If you’re driving, there’s ample parking just off the highway. You can also bike here along a bike path that extends all the way to town. It’s about a mile from the Valdez Visitor Center.