Sunday, August 29, 2010

Glacier Point Wilderness Safari

Wednesday August 25, 2010. Skagway Alaska.

We arrived at Skagway early in the morning on Wednesday. I cannot tell for sure as we both slept through the docking and woke up in Skagway. It was raining in the morning and we were not sure if the excursion would happen or not. By the afternoon, when we had to assemble on the pier, it was only occasionally drippy.

We were taken by an old Blue Bird school bus from the cruise ship pier to the small boat pier where we boarded another small jet powered ferry. The Spirit of Kingston ferried us out to Glacier Point where they beached the bow of the boat and we all scurried down a ramp to the beach. Assault on Glacier Point beach was thrilling but not really dangerous.

We got a tour of the island before suiting up for the hike to the canoes that would take us to the Davidson Glacier.

It was getting very nice so we did not have to put on the bib overalls but we did get outfitted with boots, rain coats and life vests.

Then we hiked through the woods for a 1/4 mile to the beach.

The canoes were able to seat 11 people. We had to climb into the canoes butt first and then swing our legs in, so that we did not tip it over and wind up in the 34 degree water. We pushed off from shore and paddled up the river against the current. Finally, when we reached the lake the small outboard at the back of the canoe was used to guide us to the glacier.

The glacier plows through the land and some of the dirt and rocks are pushed up onto the glacier, so part if it appears to be underground. On the right of the glacier is a cave in where the land next to the glacier fell a year ago during the winter. There were four canoes in our group and for perspective you can see two of the canoes ahead of us.

We got so close that the cold wind coming down the glacier made the air very cold.

Our guide fished a block of the glacial ice from the lake and we are holding it in this picture. This ice is hundreds of years old and perfectly clear. And, oh yes, it is cold too.

We hiked back to the bus, returned the gear and made it back across the bay from Glacier Point to Skagway just in time for the departure of the Pearl.

Link to our photos:
Alaska-Skagway-Glacier Point

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