Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Alaska, Hubbard Glacier, Day 7

We departed Sitka the afternoon of August 7 and headed west to the Gulf of Alaska and then northwest toward Hubbard Glacier. We rocked and rolled throughout dinner and the evening. Nonetheless, our dinner at the Pinnacle Grill was exquisite, another fine event, and our thanks go to Anne, Robert and Zsolt for making it a memorable experience.

By 5:30 the following morning the ship passed Ocean Cape, then embarked the U.S. Park Service Rangers, and within a few hours thereafter came face to face with a most amazing natural phenomenon where we would stop for several hours and the ship rotated so all could see.

The largest tidewater glacier in the North American continent, Hubbard Glacier stretches 76 miles from the Yukon to the sea at Yakutat Bay, and its open calving face stretches over six (6) miles wide. Glaciers advance and retreat based upon the mechanical terminus, the snout at its end, and according to the Army Corp of Engineers, Hubbard Glacier is rapidly advancing seven (7) feet per day and has been advancing for a century . (Here is a partial list of other glaciers that are expanding and may be of interest.)

Phenomenal beauty as we make our approach

(Click to enlarge the panoramic photos)

Part II at the Hubbard Glacier.

Should you like to start at the beginning of the trip, you may do so here.