Unincorporated, located within Cordova
in the Valdez-Cordova Census Area
- Area Type
- Place of Interest
- Current Population
- Pronunciation/Other Names
- (ee' yak); also see Cordova
- Census Designated Place (CDP)
- Number of Commercial Fishing Permit Holders
- Number of Commercial Fishing Permits Issued
- CDQ Participant
- CQE Eligible
Election, Recording, and Judicial Districts
- Judicial District
- Recording District
Facilities and Amenities
Geography and Climate
- Eyak is on the Copper River Highway, 5.5 miles southeast of the Cordova city center, between Eyak Lake and the Cordova airport. The area was annexed to the City of Cordova in 1992.
- Community Map Available
- Sq Mi Land
- Sq Mi Water
- Winter temperatures range from 17 to 28 °F; summer temperatures from 49 to 63 °F. Average annual precipitation includes 66 inches of rain and 80 inches of snowfall.
History and Culture
- Eyak was first reported in 1869 as "Hyacks" and then in 1880 as "Ihiak." In 1899, Lt. Comdr. Moser of the US Navy reported it as a cannery called "Odiak." The area is the home of the Eyak; over 47 sites have been identified as Eyak-occupied from Yakutat to the Copper River Delta. The Eyak lived between Chugach Eskimo, Alutiiq, and expanding Tlingit groups. Eyak is a distinct language, a branch of the Athabascan-Eyak-Tlingit language family. The Eyaks from Controller Bay, Cape Suckling, Cape Yakataga, and Yakutat Bay were Tlingitized by the 1880s. The remaining Eyak settled in the Cordova area, and, by 1900, there were only 60 remaining Eyak. Marie Smith Jones, the last native speaker of Eyak, as well as the last full-blooded Eyak, died in 2008.
- It is a federally-recognized Eyak Athabascan village located within the City of Cordova. Villagers are working together to protect their traditional lands along the Copper River Delta and to revive cultural traditions. Commercial fishing and subsistence activities sustain many residents.
- Indigenous Language
- Federally Recognized Tribe
- Name of Federally Recognized Tribe
- Native Village of Eyak
- Cordova is accessed by plane or boat. It is linked directly to the North Pacific Ocean shipping lanes through the Gulf of Alaska. It receives year-round barge services and state ferry service. The Merle K. 'Mudhole' Smith Airport at mile 13 is state owned and operated, with an asphalt runway and a gravel crosswind runway. The state owned and city operated Cordova Municipal Airport has a gravel runway. Daily scheduled jet flights and air taxis are available. Float planes land at the Lake Eyak seaplane base or the boat harbor. Harbor facilities include a breakwater, dock, small boat harbor with 850 berths, boat launch, boat haul-out, ferry terminal, and marine repair services. A 48-mile gravel road provides access to the Copper River Delta to the east. As of 2014, the road is impassable beyond mile 36 due to a bridge across the Copper River which is washed out.
- State Ferry
- Cargo Barge
- Road Connection