We hitchhiked for the first time in my life to and from the glacier (shh don't tell mom -- but it feels much safer to do so there than most places, in part because the roads of Juneau aren't connected to any larger highway system.) Saw the glacier, admired the falls, touched some icebergs, and saw salmon there to spawn and (from the viewing platform) a bears that was snacking on them.
August 25, 2013
Open Photo Gallery
Again, it's so difficult to judge the immensity of the glaciers (or anything) in Alaska when you're there, never mind capture it in a photo. This is a shot from later in the day from a walking trail that at least shows off the glacier and the nearby nugget falls.
This earlier shot shows some the icebergs. The glacier had calved underwater a week prior - time lapse video of that - most of the rangers around and in the information center were pretty chill, but this one ranger sounded SO psyched about the "multiple calving event".
Soon after we first got there, I waded in and picked up a tiny tiny iceberg that had drifted near shore.
Alas, poor iceberg, I knew him, Horatio. (I also tasted it. Very fresh, but salty from the bay)
Trying to get some of the sense of scale of the icebergs... a group of 4 were on these interesting pontoon rowboats, a beach-looking chair mounted on frame with 2 pontoons. They seemed maybe even more agile than kayaks, able to scoot forwards, backwards, and pivot.
Also, a sense of scale for nugget falls. There's an easy walk to a beach immediately next to them.
Riana takes a moment. Mist rainbow!
On the way there we had seen some salmon in the dappled water...
And from a viewing platform, a young bear...
Bear meets salmon. It doesn't turn out well for the salmon. (Riana snapped this one.)
I didn't want to leave you on that visual, so here is a (badly exposed) panorama from the nearby "Trail of Time" Of course the news is even sadder than a bear having a snack - the glacier is fairly rapidly retreating... less than a century ago, this platform would have been under ice, and there are major changes even from the 80s and 90s... like Nugget Falls used to cut THROUGH the glacier.