Verdant Cove, Kenai Fjords National Park

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Verdant Cove, Kenai Fjords National Park

by | Jan 21, 2019

Verdant Cove is on the southeast shore of the Harris Peninsula in Aialik Bay, Kenai Fjords National Park, Alaska. The cove is named after the adjacent island in Aialik Bay and is about 32 miles (52 km) southwest of Seward. The local name was reported in the early 1950s by the U.S. Coast and Geodetic Survey.

Verdant Cove was the site of an Alutiiq Sugpiaq village since before the time of Russian American occupation. Studies show that Alutiiq people and their cultural predecessors have lived along the Gulf of Alaska for at least 7,500 years. Sugpiaq people traditionally lived in semi-subterranean houses called barabaras and several have been found and excavated. The houses were large and accommodated several families each, with a common central area, and separate rooms for family use. Some side rooms, heated with hot rocks, were used for sweat bathing. These later evolved into plank houses with bark roofs.

Today Verdant Cove is still a Native land allotment consisting of two parcels, one 80 acres (32 ha), and the other 40 acres (16 ha). With the permission of the owners, park rangers sometimes use the property as a spike camp while patrolling the area. Although nearly invisible to the untrained eye, traces of Alutiiq settlements have been discovered all along the outer Kenai coast. More than 30 indigenous archeological sites have been identified in Kenai Fjords National Park. The site at Verdant Cove has been the focus of several archeological field surveys and numerous studies. Read more here and here. Explore more of Verdant Cove here:

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