They say you need “fair weather” to see the Fairweather mountain range in Glacier Bay, and we got better than that with almost clear blue skies and mountains peeking out through a thin layer of clouds. We started our exploration of the Glacier Bay National Park at Johns Hopkins Glacier seeing the immensity of the landscape from sea level up to the 15,300 feet peak of Mount Fairweather. Then it was onto Margerie Glacier where the little ice floes sparkled in the morning sun. However, the real treat was yet to come. As we traversed through Russell Cut, a lone gray wolf sat patiently on the shore of Russell Island as everyone got photos. On the opposite shore, a female coastal brown bear and its cub was spotted so we went to safely investigate while they meandered along the shoreline. After lunch we slowly drifted by South Marble Island, hearing the grunts of Steller sea lions and watching the tufted puffins fly in and out. To finish the day, we moored at Bartlett Cove and stretched our legs with some hiking into the forest admiring the porcupines!
National Geographic Quest
A fine and adventurous day was awarded to us on our last chance to explore Southeast Alaska on this voyage. We anchored in the morning at Ushk Bay just between Baraknof and Chicagof Islands. We spent the morning exploring the vast beach, meadows, and forests that make this area so special and wild. Salmon were making their final push upstream while the less lucky fishes lay as carcasses along the streams. We have learned and seen so much in our short time in Southeast Alaska and it has never disappointed.