Ice Berg Straight Ahead – Glacier Bay

I wasn’t able to sleep in so I decided to wander up to the top deck incase there were any whales to watch. Apparently, between 4 and 6am we were passing through the Icy Strait that had prime wildlife watching opportunities. What they forgot is that at that time it is still dark so even if there were things to see, it would have been impossible unless you had night vision.

I grabbed up some breakfast and settled into a quiet corner near the front of the ship. I was surrounded by giant windows from floor to ceiling so I decided this would be a good place to set up shop. I began to feel a little cold so I took a stroll down to the blanket guy on the Lido deck. He cheerfully gave me three of the red tartan patterned woolen blankets. I tucked them around myself back at my table and waited.

Several hours went by as I watched people come and go out of the dining room. The sky brightened and now I could make out the edges of the mountains through the rain. Yes, it was raining so now I was extra glad that I had secured a spot inside. I watched the little speed boat with the National Park Rangers pull up beside our slowing ship. Not long after that the Ranger commentary began through the loud speakers throughout the public areas of the ship. It was quite informative and most certainly enriched my experience of Glacier Bay.

When it finally came time to start seeing the good stuff, I called Darren who was still sleeping down in the room. I had missed this the first time I went to Alaska and didn’t want him to have that same misfortune. Also, I needed him to bring me my coat. The rangers kept encouraging us to head outside to get a real taste of this magical place. I resisted for a while but when we came upon Margerie Glacier, I decided to brave the elements.

Ofcourse I had seen glaciers before, heck, I even climbed one in New Zealand. But there was something different about this place. I guess the fact that it is so protected and untouched by humans. Its really quite a natural spectacle. There was a feeling of utter beauty that overtook me as I surveyed the huge mountains of ice. The light shade of blue from the crevaces of the giant shards almost seemed to glow. It was a sight to behold.

We were lucky enough to witness the calving of the glacier which means ice falls off the face into the water below. To add to the immensity of the moment is a loud crack also known as “white thunder”. I was mesmerized sitting patiently waiting to experience the great glaciers move. It was a feeling not unlike staring up at the night sky waiting to see a shooting star.

Though the weather was cold and rainy, we did get a few minutes of sun. There were lots of little ice “bergs” floating around in the turquoise water, some with seals lounging on top. I was also quite impressed at the magnificent wispy clouds tumbling over and draping themselves around the mountains. How could something make me feel so small and insignificant yet so honored to be connected to this level of grandeur? It was neat.

In all the excitement, I ate myself up a storm. Ug. I know what this means. To the gym. But not before I retired back to my cabin to have myself a nap. All this fresh glacial air was exhausting! I cuddled into my bed and was out for the next couple hours.

When I woke, I hit the gym for a solid 2.5 hours all the while keeping my eyes trained on the water. I was able to see several seals, whales, and many kinds of birds through the windows in front of my treadmill. It wasn’t too hard to locate them as the dedicated nature photographers out on deck would all run over to a spot and point their cameras when there was something to be seen.

I worked myself out so hard that I developed a blister on my toe. Ouch. I really need to get to the bottom of this weight situation. I feel like no matter what I do, I am not losing but gaining. I met a passenger onboard with medical background who said it may be a hormonal thing. I hope its just something that I can handle myself because I won’t be anywhere near my doctor for some time.

I dressed up for dinner which happened to be the second of the formal nights for this portion of the cruise. At supper I inquired from Tim, one of my favorite servers, just what was in my favorite red cabbage dish I had been eating religiously every night. He went away for a while then returned with some good news. I could eat till my hearts content because there was no fat in it, just some red wine vinegar and sugar.

After dinner, I met up with a younger party crowd but only lasted about an hour. I am exhausted and have to get some real sleep. Most of these people are nearing the end of their trip so can afford to party hard. I, on the other hand, have a long way to go yet.

Grateful for the surreal color of glacier water.

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2 Responses to Ice Berg Straight Ahead – Glacier Bay

  1. soulus says:


  2. Elcorin says:

    Thanks for article. Everytime like to read you.
    Thank you

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