Valdez, Alaska has some of the most breathtaking waterfalls in the world. With more than 27 feet of average snowfall during the winter, Valdez becomes the land of waterfalls when the snow melts in the spring and summertime. Countless waterfalls cascade down almost every mountainside in Valdez.
When driving into Valdez, you will pass through Keystone Canyon, a place of spectacular waterfalls, magnificent geology and fascinating history. Horsetail Falls and Bridal Veil Falls cascade over towering canyon walls, greeting travelers from above. Keystone Canyon is located at miles 14 through 17 on the Richardson Highway, and also includes the scenic Rudleston Falls.
There are various ways to get up close to these spectacular waterfalls: drive through the Keystone Canyon and park at one of the pull-outs to take beautiful photos; raft or kayak the Lowe River which runs directly in front of Bridal Veil Falls; or hike through the 1.8-mile Keystone Canyon Pack Trail that puts hikers above the Horsetail Falls and Keystone Canyon for a breathtaking birds-eye view.
During the winter, Valdez’s waterfalls freeze into towers of ice. These frozen waterfalls make for excellent sightseeing and photography opportunities, and also attract winter sports enthusiasts who use the frozen falls for ice climbing. Keystone Canyon is home to Valdez's annual Ice Climbing Festival, held each February.
Other waterfalls around Valdez can be seen on our many hiking trails. Look for the waterfalls cascading through Solomon Gulch on the John Hunter Memorial Trail, the Gold Creek waterfall along Shoup Bay Trail, or the Horsetail Creek Falls by the washout on Mineral Creek Trail.