My calves are DEAD from the Harding Ice Trail. Luckily the next two days don't involve walking. Today we did a boat tour through Kenai Fjords at the edge of Seward. It's our second national park on this trip. The conditions were absolutely perfect- sunny and visible. We really lucked out on this tour- we saw three humpback whales breach the surface of the water and one of them straight up Free Willied himself completely out (didn't get that photo unfortunately). But that's the dream when you're looking for whales- a full on breach. Below is the best shot I got of a whale coming out of the water. Zooming in helps.
Here's another whale- you cant really see him but its a cool shot because of the water you can see shooting out of the blow hole.
Below are some seals hanging out and conserving energy, which is what they do for most of the day.
We also pulled the boat directly up to a glacier. This thing was making NOISE. You could hear it cracking and then it "calved" which is when pieces fall off. We probably saw 3-4 chunks fall off and into the water. It was pretty disconcerting but it happens often. If you can believe it, this glacier moves 6-7 feet per DAY. When you get up close to these things you can see seals all along the bottom hanging out. You can also see how blue the ice gets when it's compressed.
The visuals around us the entire time were stunning- gigantic green mountains with snow streaks. There were chunks of ice in the water near the glaciers and lots of picturesque boats floating by with tours, fisherman, kayakers etc. It was a perfect Saturday and everyone was out on the water after many days of cloudy skies. My favorite image is below. You can see a small white boat at the bottom.
That night we hit up a bar and everyone was cheering for Lydia Jacoby, the Olympic swimming who won the gold a few days prior. She was swimming in real time and we got to see her hometown crowd go nuts. It was a pretty unique experience.