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 Yakutat Bay, Alaskayakutat bay alaska

Yakutat and Disenchantment Bay

As we approached the entrance to Yakutat Bay in Alaska, small icebergs started to appear around the ship. Through the morning haze we could see the towering snow capped peaks of the distant mountains and a temperate rainforest, the 17 million acre Tongass National Forest. The captain carefully maneuvered the large ship through the thickening ice field into the narrow Disenchantment Bay which contained three glaciers, Turner, Haenke and Hubbard Glacier

ice bergs in yakutat bay alaska iceberg calves wonderful shapes in alaska
Ice flow Iceberg
turner glacier in alaska turner glacier in alaska
Turner Glacier
haenke glacier in alaska hubbard glacier in alaska
Haenke Glacier Hubbard Glacier

The ship slowly approached the face of Hubbard Glacier, an imposing sight at six miles in length. To the right is the entrance to Russell Fjord, which was blocked off by the Hubbard Glacier in 2002. This led to a dam forming to a height of 61 feet, and when it broke on August 14th it sent the 2nd largest glacial flood in world history. The Fjord is still in danger of being closed off by the advancing glacier, and this would have a devastating effect on the local population. The Yakutat economy relies upon the Situk River for sport, commercial and subsistence fishing and the lake formed by the damming of Russell Fjord would drain south into the Situk river affecting the important fishing area, and flood national forest and private land. In this age of retreating ice caps and glaciers, it's strange to realise that some glaciers are still advancing. The retreat and advance of ice can have devastating local and global effects.

the face of hubbard glacier close up of hubbard glacier
The myriad of patterns on the face of the Glaciers
ice fall off hubbard glacier Click on these images for more Glacier Photos

cracks in the ice of turner glacier

turner glacier in yakutat bay alaska panoramic picture of hubbard glacier alaska
Turner Glacier Hubbard Glacier, Russell Fjord is to the right
tongass rainforest in alaska tongass national forest rainforest in alaska
Tongass National Forest, a temperate rainforest

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