Thursday, May 31, 2007
Postcards from Alaska #32
Solomon's Gulch is a scenic area across the bay from Valdez, very near the shore end of the AK pipeline. The gulch itself is beautiful, but the Soloman Gulch trail boasts what our guidebook called a steep trail leading to a lake. I thought this sounded challenging so I and the wife hoofed it up a very steep and rocky trail, through a wooded area filled with strange plants, including skunk weed (which did indeed smell like a skunk) and devil's broomstick (which is a long flowering plant with thick spiky vines that looks like it would really ruin your day were you to, say, roll down a steep hill into them).
We eventually reached a crossroads between two even steeper trails, which was where the wife said she was headed back to the RV and I could decide if I wanted to walk further. The above picture is taken from atop the next ridge, looking back toward the bay. Nearly killed me to reach this point.
Once I reached it, I had this to look at: a valley leading, I hoped, to the top of the gulch and more very steep hills beyond, presumably leading to the lake. I stumbled on toward the bridge and gulch top, cursing the journey and declaring that someone would be made to pay if the view from down there wasn't pretty damn spectacular.
I don't know if the topside view was all that great, but it was pretty enough. I decided, though, that the lake would have to be pretty for someone else to see, because I wasn't walking up any more hills beyond the one that would lead me back down the trail.