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Harriman Expedition Retraced


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July 28, 2001 Souvenir Album:

Glacier Bay National Park: The Natural World

Images | Video (click images for larger view)

Mt. Fairweather

Mt. Fairweather, as seen looking west from Tarr Inlet in front of Margerie Glacier. While Alaska is generally thought to be west of Canada, this photo shows the eastern face of the mountain, on the Canadian side of the Canada-Alaska border. The 15,320 peak is at the southwestern point of British Columbia's Tatshenshini-Alsek Provincial Park, and at the same time the highest point in Glacier Bay National Park. (Photo by Jonas K. Parker).

Whale tail

One of many humpback whales near Point Adolphus. Humpback whales feed in Alaskan waters in the summer, mostly on krill and small fish, building up body fat reserves before they head to Hawaii and the subtropics in the winter for breeding. (Photo by Jonas K. Parker).

Whale tail

While humpback whales are large (females average 45 feet long and weigh about 35 tons; males are somewhat smaller), they spend most of their time covered by water, and are hard to identify. Scientists and researchers use the unique tail markings on humpbacks to identify individual whales and track their migration, habits and family associations. Each tail has a slightly different shape, slightly different notches, and slightly different coloring. (Photo by Jonas K. Parker).

Whale pod

Prior to mechanized commercial whaling, there were an estimated 15,000 humpback whales in the North Pacific. Today, the population is estimated at no more than 1,200, and the species is endangered. This pod of four or five humpbacks displays the characteristic "humped back" just before diving that gives the species its name. (Photo by Jonas K. Parker).


South Marble Island, in the middle of Glacier Bay, is a noted nesting area for seabirds. It also hosts this sealion rookery. (Photo by Jonas K. Parker).


You see almost no birds in fjords with tidewater glaciers. The "glacier flour" (powdered rock and ice) makes the water opaque, so the seabirds can't see to fish. After the glacier flour has precipitated out and the water clears, seabirds abound, such as this black-legged kittiwake. (Photo by Megan Litwin).

Air mattress

After several days of rain and drizzle, and temperatures ranging from the low 40s to low 50s, the afternoon in Glacier Bay brought a much-appreciated visit from the sun, along with clear skies. With the heat soaring to an almost-balmy upper 50s, expedition members discovered that the air-filled Zodiacs could double as air mattresses, perfect for a quick nap. (Photo by National Ocean Service, NOAA).


Margerie Glacier

Panoramic clip of Margerie Glacier, a tidewater glacier off Tarr Inlet in Glacier Bay National Park. The front edge of the glacier rises as high as a 10-story building. The high-pitched drone on the audio track is the sound of the ship's generators and ventilators. Ships are rarely quiet. (QuickTime format, 320 x 240 pixels, 14 seconds, 2.3 megabytes. RealVideo alternative.) (Photo by National Ocean Service, NOAA)

Grand Pacific

Rapid panoramic shot of the Grand Pacific Glacier and then the Margerie Glacier, both off Tarr Inlet in Glacier Bay National Park. At one time the Grand Pacific Glacier completely filled Tarr Inlet, blocking Margerie Glacier from the sea, but a catastrophic retreat may soon leave the Grand Pacific entirely landbound. (QuickTime format, 320 x 240 pixels, 13 seconds, 2.2 megabytes. RealVideo alternative.) (Photo by National Ocean Service, NOAA)

Swirling waters

Swirling ice off Margerie Glacier in Tarr Inlet, Glacier Bay National Park. A combination of high tides and a steady stream of fresh melt from the glacier causes the water to swirl in a rapid, counterclockwise motion. The double-clicking sounds are from the shutters of nearby cameras. (QuickTime format, 320 x 240 pixels, 12 seconds, 1.9 megabytes. RealVideo alternative.) (Photo by National Ocean Service, NOAA)




For information on the Harriman Retraced Expedition e-mail: harriman2001@science.smith.edu

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