National Geographic Venture entered Glacier Bay National Park at midnight and proceeded toward the northern reaches of the bay. Guests emerged onto the decks as the sun illuminated the high peaks (Mounts Orville and Wilbur) above Johns Hopkins Glacier at the head of Johns Hopkins Inlet – one of the most stunning views in all of Southeast Alaska. Resting comfortably on low icebergs, harbor seals lingered following the pupping season.
Naturalist-Park Service Ranger Anne and Tlingit cultural specialist Deeyaa (Kari) joined us on board to interpret the dynamic processes and human history of this magnificent place.
We visited Margerie and Grand Pacific Glaciers and then passed by Gloomy Knob to see mountain goats, and South Marble Island to view Steller sea lions and seabirds. Other animals included brown (grizzly) bears, sea otters, a few humpback whales, and a variety of birds. Fall colors were evident and much of the wildlife was staging to depart for the winter or preparing to survive it. People are doing the same throughout Southeast Alaska.
We arrived at park headquarters in Bartlett Cove and had an opportunity to enjoy a forest walk, visit a tribal house, and learn the story of Snow the humpback whale.