Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Alaska Cruise - Day 3: Mendenhall Glacier

As I mentioned, I was very excited about whale watching. So much so, that I forgot about the rest of the excursion. When Josh would ask about our upcoming trip, I'd tell him, in Juneau we are going whale watching. I had completely forgotten that there was a second part to our excursion. So we were both equally surprised to learn that we were also going to the Mendenhall Glacier.

The closer we got, the more excited we got. By the time the bus parked, Josh and I had read each others minds and knew that the other was hiking up the trail whether the other one wanted to or not. One trail was shorter and went to a viewing area. Or there was a 2nd trail that took you to the edge of the water right in front of the glacier. We both agreed to take the longer trail; we wanted to see it up close.

I can't believe I was that close to a glacier!

Randi & Todd were the only other ones from the excursion group to hike up that far so it felt like we had the place to ourselves. On the way up the trail, someone coming back told us that when the path split, stick to the dirt, it would get us there a little quicker. We took the short cut, which did involve jumping the stream a few times. Todd & Randi took the longer way that had bridges. We actually ended up getting there about the same time.
This waterfall was just to the side of the glacier.

Josh stuck his hand in the water and declared it cold.

We both choose a rock from the water to bring home as a souvenir since we didn't have time to explore the gift store.

We wanted our picture in front of the waterfall, so I suggested the rock. But to get to the rock, you had to jump a pretty wide stream. We had crossed a few streams to get to the glacier, but not one this big with no stepping stones to help us across. At first Josh said no, but then he said "We'll never be here again so what the hell." and he jumped the stream. On the way back, I had one foot fall in, but it was still worth it because this ended up being one of my very favorite pictures during our vacation.
One of the streams we crossed.

When we got back, Andrew was excited to tell Josh he had seen a mountain goat through the spotting scope in the gift shop. Josh had him point to the point on the mountain and Josh found him. Then Josh pointed it out to me and I found him too. Josh was thrilled to see wildlife that he hopes to one day go back and hunt for. Of course you can't see it in the picture above, but Josh loves to point it out. You start on the cliff at the left side of the mountain. Go up to the second notch and then go right just a little bit. He was laying behind a fallen tree.

1 comment:

Jessica said...

Love the little rocks you brought home!