Your hosts are Valdez residents Joshua and Tabatha Swierk. Josh and I were both raised in Maine and met in college at the University of Maine, Orono. Once we had college under our belts we were eager to explore more of this beautiful country that we had only started to get a taste of through a number of road trips.
In the summer of 2004 we were invited by Josh’s parents to travel to Alaska with them. While we were here we had the opportunity to explore a bit and visited Anchorage, Seward, Soldotna, Homer, Talkeetna, Denali National Park, Slana, Glennallen and finally Valdez.
When we drove over Thompson Pass and through Keystone Canyon we were blown away. We knew we had found a very special place. That it was a beautifully sunny 80 degree day didn’t hurt either. With a bit of impulsive adventurous spirit, we made the decision that we were going to move to Valdez.
Josh and I love the outdoors, especially skiing, snowboarding and snowmachining, and Valdez is an abundant playground for our pursuits. We were married here on our property in 2007 and built the Lodge in the summer of 2008. With a lot of hard work and help from family and friends, we opened for business in the summer of 2009.
On September 8th, 2010 we welcomed Rachel Lee Swierk to our family. On June 29th, 2012, Rachel became a big sister to Alana May. We are excited to raise our girls in one of the most amazing places in the world.
- Population: 4,353
- Incorporated: 1901
- Summer Average Temp: 53.5
- High: 60.8 / Low: 46.1
- Winter Average Temp: 22.5
- High: 27.9 / Low: 17.1
- Longest Day: 19h20m
- Shortest Day: 5h30m
- Average Annual Precipitation: 64.04 inches
- Average Annual Snowfall (in city): 325.6 inches
- Average Snowfall in Thompson Pass: over 600 inches
- Record Snowfall (in city): 556.7 inches (1989/90)
- Record Snowfall in Thompson Pass: over 900 inches
- Record High Temperature: 26 days above 70 degrees (1997)
- Pink Salmon: Mid-to-late June through early August
- Chum Salmon: Early July through mid-September
- Silver Salmon: Mid-July through mid-September
- King Salmon: Year Round
- Halibut: From February 1 through December 31
- Built: 2008/2009
- Origin of Logs: Interior Alaska
- Builder(s): Josh Swierk, with Derek Galbraith and SCLS, with a lot of friends and family help
- What is it sitting on: Solid 12 inch concrete footer poured on solid bedrock with steel anchors and reinforcement.
- Future plans: Expanding to include five rental cabins