Expedition Team: Dave Miller, Rosie Miller Expedition Date: July 8, 2018
Arriving at Whittier via the Alaska Railroad, Rosie and I boarded the 26 Glacier Boat named the “Klondike Express” to go see…..26 glaciers. The town of Whittier average 20 feet of snow per year while the nearby mountains averaged 100 feet of snow. During the 140 mile cruise we had an indoor front seat & table in the bow and enjoyed hot smoked salmon stew. The five hour cruise took us through Esther Passage of Prince William Sound to Harriman Fjord and College Fjord and back to Whittier.
Along the way we saw orca whales, sea otters and many eagles. One photo I took, not shown here, shows an orca jumping out of the water. The orca or killer whale is actually the largest of a group of marine mammals known as dolphins. Prince William Sound is the home for 6,000 eagles.
We really did go by 26 glaciers on this cruise. At Surprise Glacier (Photo#5-#7) the boat pulled up very close and you could hear what sounded like thunder as the glacier ice cracked and calved. Up close the glacier snow looked sparkling blue in color. A monk from Nepal was on the boat dressed only in a light sheet. He had to be cold. We posed with a Merry Christmas sign with a glacier as the backdrop.
On the return trip from the glaciers before reaching harbor we stopped by a bird rookery across the bay from Whittier. Ten thousand kittiwake birds inhabit the rocky cliffs each summer laying eggs.