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Harriman Expedition Retraced

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August 1, 2001 Souvenir Album:

College Fjord


Images | Video (click images for larger view)

Wellsley Glacier

College Fjord, which branches off of Prince William Sound, plunges into the heart of the Chugach Mountains. As the name suggests, the glaciers along the fjord are generally named after East Coast Ivy League colleges. This is Wellesley Glacier, north of Barnard Glacier and south of Vassar Glacier. Note the cave at the waterline, evidence of a constant flow of water under the ice. (Photo by National Ocean Service, NOAA).

Vassar Glacier

Glaciers on the northwest side of College Fjord are generally named after 19th century "women's colleges." Vassar Glacier is located north of Wellesley Glacier and south of Bryn Mawr Glacier. Vassar Glacier no longer extends down to sea level. (Photo by Jonas K. Parker).

Smith Alumni

Harriman Expedition Retraced featured a large number of past and present Smith College students. They gathered together for a group portrait in front of Smith Glacier, located north of Bryn Mawr Glacier and south of Harvard Glacier. (Photo by National Ocean Service, NOAA).

Baltimore Glacier

Baltimore Glacier (on the left) flows from the northwest into Harvard Glacier, at the end of the fjord. Note how the medial at the center of Baltimore Glacier is picked up by Harvard Glacier and carried to the sea. This photo was taken from sea level in a Zodiac. (Photo by Jonas K. Parker).

Harvard Glacier

Dominating the terminus of College Fjord is Harvard Glacier, a tidewater glacier noted for its very active calving. While more than 90 percent of all glaciers in Alaska are retreating, Harvard Glacier is slowly advancing. Notice the harbor seals resting on the ice. This photo was taken from a Zodiac traveling through the brash ice. (Photo by National Ocean Service, NOAA).

Harvard calving

Glaciers calve with a sharp boom that sounds similar to a massive detonation of high explosives, followed by a roar as thousands of tons of ice plunge into the sea. Photographing a calving is a matter of patience and luck. (Photo by Jonas K. Parker).

Harvard wave crest

A few seconds after the previous photo was taken, and from a slightly different angle, the sea seems to "bulge" as hundreds of thousands of tons of water are displaced, creating a radial wave front. Such waves are dangerous but, after a spirited debate over the radio between the various expedition Zodiacs, and with the aid of handheld GPS (Global Positioning System) units and the ship's radar, the calving was pinpointed as being 4,100 feet from the nearest Zodiac. (Photo by National Ocean Service, NOAA).


Video

College fjord

Panoramic clip of College Fjord, taken from the expedition ship. The sound on the audio track consists mostly of the ship's ventilators, as heard on the top (sun) deck. The glaciers shown are, in order, Smith, Bryn Mawr, Vassar and Wellesley. (QuickTime format, 320 x 240 pixels, 14 seconds, 2.2 megabytes. RealVideo alternative.) (Photo by National Ocean Service, NOAA)

Icebergs

A clip taken from a Zodiac speeding through the brash ice in front of Harvard Glacier in College Fjord. (QuickTime format, 320 x 240 pixels, 18 seconds, 2.8 megabytes. RealVideo alternative.) (Photo by National Ocean Service, NOAA)

Harvard panoramic

A panoramic clip of Harvard Glacier. Notice the odd sound created by the Zodiac as it travels through the brash ice. (QuickTime format, 320 x 240 pixels, 11 seconds, 1.8 megabytes. RealVideo alternative.) (Photo by National Ocean Service, NOAA)

Harvard calving

A short clip of Harvard Glacier calving. Notice the harbor seals pop up and down as they investigate the roar. Note, too, what happens when people in a rubber boat try to brace themselves by grabbing the photographer. (QuickTime format, 320 x 240 pixels, 11 seconds, 1.8 megabytes. RealVideo alternative.) (Photo by National Ocean Service, NOAA)

Harvard crest

While the water in the previous clip was generally flat and calm, less than a minute later a lengthy series of swells reach the Zodiac. The ice in the water has, fortunately, dampened the effects of the radial wave created by the calving. (QuickTime format, 240 x 320 pixels, 11 seconds, 1.7 megabytes. RealVideo alternative.) (Photo by National Ocean Service, NOAA)


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

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