Endicott Arm and Dawes Glacier

Jul 30, 2018 - National Geographic Quest

Calm, turquoise waters shimmered with reflections of snow clad mountains as National Geographic Quest made its way up Endicott Arm. Our destination: Dawes Glacier in Tracy Arm-Fords Terror Wilderness area! Blue skies and a gentle breeze accompanied the journey towards the glacier. We anchored, lowered Zodiacs and continued to get as close to the wall of ice as was safe. We cheered many calving events, with one in particular, taking the show by far! Who knows…20 tons? 30 tons? 100 tons? of ice freefell from the 200+ foot wall of ice into the water. We continued to cheer the huge splash which was followed almost 2 seconds later by the thunderous roar created by the calving event. Incredible!

Back to the ship for lunch, safety briefings, and sailing out of the arm. We stopped at a few choice spots to look for wildlife and view beautiful waterfalls as they cascaded down the sheer granite walls. Then, as predicted, just as I began my Introduction to Expedition Photography, we spotted humpback whales, drawing everybody outside for the show. Following the whale sighting, we sailed through the afternoon into the evening with blue skies and that gentle breeze. Indeed, this was a wonderful way to begin this adventure!

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About the Author

David Jaffe

Naturalist/Certified Photo Instructor

For more than 20 years David Jaffe has guided and taught a variety of audiences about our natural world and our connection with it. His childhood interest in natural systems eventually brought him to Evergreen State College where he earned a B.S. in Environmental Studies and Geology, followed by a M.S in Applied Ecology from the University of Vermont. Mingling an academic background with experience working around the world in exceptionally diverse environments, he is able to efficiently observe, understand, and interpret natural and cultural history.

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