To say that we are off to a good start would be a major understatement after the day we’ve had here aboard National Geographic Venture. We began our day with a warm cup of coffee and a delicious breakfast. Then, jumped right into Southeast Alaska with our first Zodiac tours among the icebergs and bergy bits of Endicott Arm. Here, the infamous Dawes Glacier is actively calving massive chunks of ice into the sea, and we were fortunate enough to be right near the face as several enormous pieces broke free. The native Tlingit refer to the powerful sound that echoes through the valley as white thunder, and once you here it you’ll know exactly why.
Here, in Endicott Arm, the scenery is quite stunning; with 3-4,000 ft granite walls shooting straight up out of the water on either side of this narrow fjord. You’ll often find mountain goats perched up on the steep cliffs and curious harbor seals popping up to take a look around, then, disappearing again into the silky water. Endicott Arm is part of Tracy Arm/Fords Terror Wilderness and we are thankful that such a beautiful place is held to the highest level of protection.
As we made our way back out of Endicott Arm and prepared for our first recap of the expedition, we were greeted by several humpback whales, and they gave us quite the show. Our talented team from the galley topped the day off with a very satisfying dinner, then, we settled into the lounge for an interesting talk from one of our most experienced naturalists, Linda Nicklin. She shared the history and wonders of the Tongass National Forest, which we are set to explore as our adventure continues.