Sunday, August 29, 2010

Seward, Alaska

August 29. Our first stayover was in Seward, Alaska for a couple of nights. It is a beautifully situated town, and was badly damaged by the huge "Good Friday" earthquake and tsunami of 1964. There were a dozen deaths from this catastrophe. The town is at sea level, but mountains rise up to a mile high from here - the height of the tallest mountain in Maine where I used to live. The visitor center for Kenai Fjords National Park is in the town. Here are some photos of the area:

Mount Marathon is right next to the town. From sea level, it climbs to just over 3,000 feet. Every Fourth of July, there is a race to the top and back - no trails, just right up the mountain. I actually met the 2005 winner about 10 days later. He won the thing in 47 minutes, round trip, which I cannot conceive of. I think it would take me a couple of hours just to get to the top of that mountain, and I am not in terrible shape. I think it is the second oldest US foot race, next to the Boston Marathon.
Beautiful mountain ranges and glaciers ring Seward.
We spotted this waterfall near the top of a mountain.
There are plenty of pleasure, working, and tour boats in the picturesque harbor.
The large cruise ship pulled into town during the night and left at the end of our first day here. It is with Holland America lines.
View from the rocky beach at the southern end of Seward.