Monday, June 20, 2016

Parked in front of a glacier


Hubbard Glacier, or a huge hunk of ice.
St.Elias
 
We cruised down passing St. Elias peak on the way – the second tallest in Northern America to enter Yakutat Bay and one truly has to have seen it to believe it – as trite as that may sound. The immensity: 200 meters high, 73 miles long and 6 miles across the portion that was visible to us. Hubbard Glacier is one of 8 in the Northern Continent that is still progressing instead of receding like Travis next to it. They predict that it will cut off Russell Fjord sometime in the near future.

Hubbard Glacier from a distance

Hubbard Glacier coming closer

The Holland America parked in front of the Hubbard Glacier

Hubbard Glacier closing in

Travis Glacier to the left of Hubbard Glacier
 
sesmic measuring insturments

Hubbard Glacier closer in but still about a quarter of a mile away

Hubbard Glacier

We were there in the afternoon so there was a bit of “calving” activity where bits break away from the face of the glacier into the bay. What with the time lag in between seeing and hearing, one brother reckoned that we were about 10 miles away – and it looked like if we just moved a few yards closer that we would be able to touch it! Everything about Alaska is BIG and distances are very deceiving.

We went to dinner as the boat was leaving Yakutat Bay. After dinner K and I had intended heading for the library whilst my brother went to watch a game on the big screen, but got side-tracked watching the “beautiful people” getting their official cruise pictures taken and participating in the “Champagne Fall”: a bank of champagne glasses built into a tree then filled with champagne from the top cup in such a manner that it overflowed towards the lower ones: a stupendous sight.

"Memo" pouring the champagne onto the champagne tree

Champagne tree

Our Captain

Leaving St.Elias behind

The day’s temperature: 22°C!