Kenai Fjords and Aialik Glacier

The Kenai Fjords National Park is mostly inaccessible by land — there’s not much in the way of hiking, and a lot of it is occupied by the Harding Icefield, which is a gigantic sheet of ice out of which several glaciers flow. To see the park you need to take a boat into the fjords. We went around the Aialik peninsula to see the Aialik Glacier. We saw lots of Steller sea lions, bald eagles, tufted and horned puffins, harbor seals, a black bear or two, mountain goats, porpoises, and other birds whose names I forget. The sea otters kept their distance so it was hard to see them up close. The ocean was a bit choppy so most of my photos came out a bit blurry, but I managed to snap a shot of some Steller sea lions hauled out on a rock:

Sea Lions in the Kenai Fjords

The most impressive sight was the Aialik Glacier itself. The glacier is one mile across, but the photo from a distance makes it seem quite small:

Aialik glacier from afar

Ice constantly breaks off (“calves”) from the glacier, making the water surrounding it kind of like a melting slushie:

Slush on the approach to the Aialik glacier

What you do is pull up as close as you can to the glacier while still being safe and watch the front of it to see the ice calve. Huge chunks break off with a creaking groan, crack, and splash. I managed to get one shot of a large section of glacier calving:

Ice calving off of Aialik Glacier

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