The largest non-polar tidewater glacier in the world was one of the major highlights of our cruise adventure. How could I have forgotten something that has made it to my “Top Picks” list? Can I blame it on exhaustion from the holiday stress??
Now really… how could I have forgotten the day our ship approached Disenchantment Bay at the head of Yakutat Bay? We were all bundled up on the gelid deck when the ship slowed down and the glacier came more into a breathtaking view. As Hubbard advances, it moans and groans as huge chunks of ice moves and eventually crashes into the bay creating a sound the Tlinglits call “White Thunder”. It does sound like thunder and it took me a while to realize that it was from the falling icebergs. 😛
Yes my friends, Hubbard is one of the eight glaciers that is currently advancing instead of retreating, thickening instead of thinning. First mapped in 1895, the Hubbard’s huge open face is more than 5 miles wide and actively calves icebergs as large as 10-story buildings. Once in 1986 and then again in 2002, it has twice blocked the mouth of Russell Fjord making it a lake as high as 90 ft above sea level.
Hubbard Glacier was a sight to remember and it indubitably deserves a post in this blog. 🙂
More interesting mosaics here.