Friday, June 26, 2015

Day 2 in Alaska- Walking on Worthington Glacier


After getting some much needed rest from camping along the highway (will post more on this later), we headed towards Worthington Glacier near the town of Valdez.




While the park led you to a nice circular area where you could view the glacier from a distant and safe location as well as read interesting plaques... you know... where the 'normal' stay. We instead ventured outside the lines.

On my "to do list" for Alaska (which you can see by clicking here), was the opportunity to walk on a glacier... or under it.... doesn't matter.... but I want ice either above or below me. So we ventured further and actually walked on the glacier. As you can see it is quite "dirty". That's because it is moving the rocks, the soil, along with it. There were huge boulders just sitting atop the ice... slowly moving with the glacier.



Side Note before someone sues me: I do not recommend doing this if you are an inexperienced hiker, have children, or pets, or feel uncomfortable. This is not considered safe. As the old adage always implies and applies- just because one person does something doesn't mean someone else has to do it too.

But we made it.... our feet directly above the ice!




We even snagged a piece of ice.


No we didn't eat it, but we did later drink some of the water coming out from the glacier. It was very cold and clean.

Information about Worthington Glacier:

* Even though the earth is warming, the Worthington glacier may be one of the last surviving glaciers in the area because of it's location. Facing north east, this has helped to slow it's decline and melting process.
*Glaciers move faster when the ice temperature is warm, and therefore there is more meltwater, and if the area beneath (mountains) is steep.
*Glaciers move slower in cooler temperatures, and therefore less meltwater, and the areas underneath (canyon) are flat.
*Glaciers can be unsafe. Even though the glaciers can carry large boulders atop them for a long distance, the sun can cause meltwater within the glaciers (like cream filling) and cause places to be unstable and therefore crevices can form.

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