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Visitor Center Overlook of Mendenhall Glacier near Juneau, Alaska

Alaska has so many impressive glaciers. Unfortunately, most are in remote areas of the state. Mendenhall Glacier is a beautiful and very accessible exception. Simply take a tour, taxi or car about 12 miles from Juneau in order to enjoy this dramatic glacier flowing into Mendenhall Lake. This impressive view is from an overlook platform […]

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Moss-covered Valley in Glacier Bay in Alaska

This U-shaped valley at the base of a mountain tells a story of a glacier’s retreat. The broad, flat floor among the steep walls suggests the ice was once very deep. The river of sediment shows the path of the final flow. And the moss covering only a portion of the barren zone indicates the […]

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Turner Glacier nearby Hubbard Glacier in Alaska

Four smaller ice fields surround Hubbard Glacier. This is its western neighbor, Turner Glacier. But it seems unfair to call this tidal glacier small because it is 21 miles long and the terminus shown here is 3.7 miles wide. It was named after geologist John Henry Turner. Over one hundred years ago, the Turner Glacier […]

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Russell Fjord at Hubbard Glacier Dam Site in Alaska

The dark rock on the right is the tip of Gilbert Point. Behind it is the mouth of the 35 mile long Russell Fjord. Twice during the last 30 years, the glacier blocked this opening. This transformed the fiord into a giant lake. When the dam broke in 1986, the gushing water was equivalent to […]

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Approaching Hubbard Glacier in Alaska

After your ship sails from the Gulf of Alaska through the Yakutat Bay, it slowly advances toward the Hubbard Glacier’s terminus in Disenchantment Bay. The rising sun makes the glacier’s blue facets sparkle like a gemstone. This giant wall of ice is over six miles wide, is as tall as a 40 story building and […]

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Malaspina Glacier near Yakutat Bay in Alaska

This view of the Malaspina Glacier is at the intersection of the Gulf of Alaska and the entrance to Yakutat Bay. The giant sheet of ice flows down from the Saint Elias Mountains which peaks at 18,000 feet. This piedmont glacier – meaning it remains in a valley and does not reach the water – […]

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Exit Glacier near Seward, Alaska

Most of Alaska’s glaciers are only visible by ship or plane. But the Exit Glacier near Seward, Alaska, can be reached after a short hike through the Kenai Fjords National Park. The glacier earned its name in 1968 when the first team to successfully cross the Harding Icefield finished their journey here. That icefield covers […]

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Floating Icebergs at Mendenhall Glacier near Juneau, Alaska

Notice the large icebergs floating in Mendenhall Lake at the base of Mendenhall Glacier. Witnessing them being created is very exciting. The process is called calving. First, there is a loud noise resembling an explosion. The sudden sound can be startling. Then, watch in awe as a massive sheet of ice and rock breaks off […]

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Train Turning through Coastal Mountains in Skagway, Alaska

As the WP&YR train chugs along the White Pass Route through the stunning coastal mountains, most tourists elect to enjoy the marvelous views from the comfort of their window seats. Those determined to photograph the excursion jostle for position outside on small platforms between the parlor cars. You know where I was standing for the […]

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Sunrise Approach to Whittier Harbor in Alaska

The town of Whittier has less than two hundred residents but hundreds of thousands of people use its deep port harbor each year to board or disembark their cruise ship. They also pass through the Anton Anderson Memorial Tunnel which is only one lane that stretches 13,300 feet through the Maynard Mountains. A control gate […]