All good things must come to an end, and it is the same with Steve’s Excellent Alaskan Adventure. It is not over yet, but the end is very near. We made it back to Petersburg yesterday after a couple of days camping near the LeConte Glacier. The point of this part of the of the trip was to kayak among the ice floating in the bay outside the glacier. The ice flow from this glacier moves very rapidly. Massive blocks of ice regularly calve off the face of the glacier with a huge splash and a thunderous voice. It is difficult to describe the sound the ice makes as it falls into the bay, but it is like thunder and a cannon shot combined. The pieces can be massive. The ice slowly melts and floats down the bay to the ocean. Our job as photographers is to use the kayak as a platform to position our cameras in a way to create interesting foregrounds with the glacier and the mountains in the background. Not an easy task when the think about the fact that both the kayak and the ice chunks are drifting the tide and the wind. But, when you think about the fact that the ice has been locked up inside that glacier for who knows how long, maybe centuries, it it is kind of cool to be around it. The weather cooperated with some low-level clouds and mist upon our arrival, but later, everything cleared, and we had blue skies. There wasn’t a cloud in the sky. Of course, that is great for tourists, but we photographers are a picky bunch and we prefer clouds and atmosphere to sunny blue skies.
So, I haven’t had a chance to process any images from my big camera yet, but here is an iPhone shot from the kayak. You can see my kayak buddy Ray in front of me and the edge of the LeConte Glacier in the background. Only a very small portion of the glacier face is revealed in this image. The remainder is hidden from view by the rock face in front of us. I don’t know for sure, but the vertical face of the glacier is probably a mile wide and several hundred feet tall. Hopefully, I have some images I can share later to show this better!