Meares Glacier Excursion

The cloudy weather has been sucking the color out of my pictures the last few weeks.  It was refreshing to get this splash of color first thing this morning as we were on our way to board for our cruise.  Looks like these folks are getting ready for a kayak outing.

Color!

Color!

The cruise left at 10:00 a.m.  There were only 47 of us today, which is about half capacity, so plenty of elbow room.

Stan Stephens

Valdez Spirit, Stan Stephens Glacier & Wildlife Cruises

Rain was in the forecast again, so we expected it to be cloudy and damp.  It did stay cloudy all day and there was some rain, but nothing serious.  Temps felt like they were around 45 degrees but the boat was heated and we were very comfortable inside.

Cloudy Start

Cloudy Start

Bald eagles are frequently seen here.

Bald Eagle

Bald Eagle

Our destination was to visit the Meares Glacier.  Along the way we encountered several icebergs.  These came from the Columbia Glacier, which was not included in our tour as there wasn’t enough time in the day to visit both glaciers.  But we did have to cruise through the glacial ice that had traveled several miles from it.

Iceberg

Iceberg

The Kodiak is a fishing vessel that was featured in several episodes of the reality show Deadliest Catch.

Deadliest Catch, Kodiak

Deadliest Catch, Kodiak

Then in the middle of no where we stopped to pick up a passenger.  It seemed odd to pull along side this little boat out in the middle of the water.  But it is not an uncommon thing for people who work out here, construction workers or for whatever reason, to be brought out here to the cruise route to hitch a ride out.

Picking Up a Passenger

Picking Up a Passenger

The wildlife was being shy today and we didn’t see a lot.  But we did circle this raft of sea otters who were just chillin’ out and didn’t seem too worried about us.

A Raft of Sea Otters

A Raft of Sea Otters

Finally we reached the Meares Glacier.  This is one of the only advancing tidewater glaciers in North America.  Most other glaciers are shrinking.  The captain brought the boat to within 1/4 mile and stayed there for about 45 minutes while we watched it calve.  We could hear the crack and thunder and saw several large chunks break off and fall into the water.

Meares Glacier

Meares Glacier

Steller Sea Lions Hanging Out on the Ice

Harbor Seals Hanging Out on the Ice

 

This entry was posted in Alaska Trip 2013, August, Daily Post and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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