In 2005, I spent a week in Valdez, Alaska because my one-act play Allegro Passionato had been selected for Presentation at the annual Last Frontier Theater Conference (actually spelled “Theatre” but I refuse to use that spelling whenever possible). A number of playwrights flew into Valdez (pronounced “vall-deez”) from Anchorage in a small propeller plane. The approach to the airport proved most suspenseful as the tip of the left wing was never more than 50 feet away from one mountain whilst the tip of the right was never more than 50 feet away from another mountain. We landed safely at an airstrip that lies less than 100 feet from the base of another 5,000 foot mountain. When I disembarked, I met the conference host and asked what was the name of the mountain next to the airstrip.
He replied, “Vonn, this is Alaska. We don’t name our foothills.”
Yup. Alaska is big.
Snow is big in Valdez–the locals like to boast of having the heaviest annual snowfall in the world. Which explains why the sign below reaches 8 feet high.
You see, if the sign did not reach so high, the snow drifts would cover it and the snowplows would knock over the fire hydrant.
Here are two more from the collection (all shots taken with a Nikon CoolPix 4300 in Landscape Mode and unedited).
Remember, those are only foothills in the background.
I still can’t believe we bought America’s largest state from the Russians for only $7.2 million.