Fern Harbor, George Island

May 22, 2019 - National Geographic Venture


Our day began at Fern Harbor, a scarcely visited segment of Glacier Bay National Park. This is a place that most onboard had never before visited, and one that would gift us the sighting of a brown bear as well as views all the way up the Brady Glacier landscape. Some explored along the intertidal zone, meadows, and extensive mud flats, while others enjoyed Zodiac tours around intricate bays of the north side of Cross Sound. Glacier Bay Park is one of the true wonders of the world, at over 3.3 million acres, and it is always a treat when you get to set foot on the ground and explore here. One of our guests was able to step foot into his 50th national park visit today!

After lunch we made our way just a few miles south to explore George Island. We found a perfect crescent-shaped beach to land as the sun came out and it turned into another delightful day in Southeast Alaska. Here we were able to hike along the well-maintained trails, and also explore the cove via kayak.

Hikers explored the temperate, moss-covered rainforest as we learned about the history of George Island and its role in protecting the US during the Second World War. Atop the Island you will find a massive, steely gun emplacement which was installed to protect Cross Sound from Japanese invasion. We hiked along the trails to the gun, taking in the sights and sounds along the way. Naturalists shared knowledge of the area’s plant life as we meandered through the forest with rays of sunshine breaking through the canopy. Leaving the beach, we were greeted by a minke whale and a few humpbacks cruising around the island. It has truly been an incredible journey so far, and we still have more to come!

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About the Author

Jared Funderburk

Naturalist

Jared grew up in the Carolinas with a passion for exploring the natural world and helping others discover and appreciate it. Ever since he was a boy, he’s always felt most at home in nature. 

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