Student Articles‎ > ‎Miscellaneous‎ > ‎

Where is the Vale

    Game of Thrones has been an exciting and interesting show since it started in 2011. It has raised many questions we have yet to find answers to, but there is one question that has been on my mind recently... Where is the Vale? And on I’m not referring to it being in the continent of Westeros, that’s obvious. I mean where geographically would the Vale be on planet earth? (Well, just the US. The whole earth is a bit too big to look through.)

    I’m going to start with some easy facts. For starters the Vale is surrounded by huge impassable mountains called the Mountains of the Moon. These mountains are what makes the Vale such a secure place, since to get an army there you have to fit that army through a narrow trench to the Bloody Gate, without being buffeted by arrows. But the mountains can't be all that high, because we only ever see it snow there once, and even then that's in the main stronghold in the Vale, the Erie, which has a highest point than the peaks of most of the mountains. And the snow line for heavy snow is over 15,000 feet above sea level, so they probably won’t be any higher than that. The average mountain size is about 13,000 feet above sea level, so Mountains of the Moon are probably somewhere around that height. For reference, the highest mountain in the world, Mount Everest, is 29,000 feet. Additionally, the vale doesn't seem all that warm, given the heavy snow and high altitude, but its not Winterfell weather either. And for one last fact, in the Vale, the ruling house, Arryn, has a fleet of ships, meaning they are close by to a body of water, most likely leading to a sea or ocean.

    So, based on those facts, can we find a matching place in the US that would fit these requirements? Well, we can rule out a few places right off the bat. Florida, Hawaii, New Mexico, Arizona, California, and Texas are all too hot for the Vale to be there. And as for places that are too cold: New Hampshire, Colorado, Wyoming, Alaska, Utah, Montana, and Minnesota are all too cold for the Vale. (Even though the Vale does have harsh winters, I’m pretty sure all of Westeros does, it’s kind of the theme.) And because the Vale is right beside the ocean, or some large body of water, we can cross all the landlocked states off our list. Plus, The Vale and surrounding Mountains of the Moon are 600 miles wide! So Rhode Island, Connecticut, New Jersey, Delaware, and Maryland are all way too small for the Vale. That leaves us with Washington, Oregon, Maine, and Virginia. Maine and Virginia’s highest mountains both have a peak under 6,000 feet, so both of them are probably not going to hold the impassable mountains in the Vale. So now, it’s between Washington and Oregon. They both have really similar geography, with Washington’s mountains only being higher by two or three thousand feet. So really, it could be either, but Washington has a higher rate of snow, and a lower rate of rain than Oregon and has a slightly colder climate. So that’s that, Washington is the most likely candidate for the Vale’s location in the US.