Tracy Arm, Fords Terror, and Dawes Glacier

Aaron Raymond, Naturalist/Certified Photo Instructor

  • Daily Expedition Reports
  • 14 Aug 2021

Tracy Arm, Fords Terror, and Dawes Glacier, 8/14/2021, National Geographic Sea Bird

  • Aboard the National Geographic Sea Bird
  • Alaska

On the last full day of this voyage, the National Geographic Sea Bird traveled up the long Endicott Arm toward a tidewater glacier. This morning, floating ice was particularly dense and in high quantity. Guests aboard Zodiacs took part in a true expedition to weave through the ice and approach the bright blue face of Dawes Glacier. It was an exciting trip, given the immense quantity of icebergs shaped in all ways and sizes. During the time Zodiacs were out, the Sea Bird was able to reposition, shortening the travel distance back to the mothership. Afterwards, there was a lecture about how icefields feed the ocean, and salmon that circle back upriver.

After lunch, our young Global Explorers spent additional time in Zodiacs and even learned to drive them. Many guests were interested in the full experience of the icy water surrounding them, so at 3pm, there was a Polar Plunge directly into the silty, cold ocean.

Our second Zodiac trip took us into the Fords Terror Wilderness Area. During approach of slack ebb tide, Zodiacs entered the passage. Even though water was moving at a lower speed, rapids were surfed. Afterward, we entered another astounding landscape with thin cascades falling over steep granite, complemented by effervescent light. That place was truly awesome.

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