A few years back, before coming to McCarthy, I worked a two summers in Glacier Bay National Park. The glaciers there, however, were not very accessible. For one thing, they were Tidewater Glaciers, meaning that they terminated in the water, i.e., the Pacific ocean.
One summer I worked on a tour boat, so I saw them every bloody day, but actually getting up onto the glaciers was a whole ‘nother story. Watching the glaciers, day after day, made me feel a bit like a Medieval peasant gazing up at the lord’s manor, up on the hill.
In Glacier Bay, just getting to the glaciers required an investment of at least four days. It meant acquiring a kayak and gear and all the supplies for a multi-day camping excursion — and even then it wasn’t easy to actually get on top of them and explore. Hence I wasn’t quite sure what to do with myself when I came to McCarthy five years ago and found that there were miles and miles of flat glacier to explore, right in my backyard.
A few days ago, I went out on a hike on a trail that took me along the Root Glacier, following the Erie Mine Trail. Miles and miles of glacier ice.
Despite that yuge chunk of ice, I still got myself a bit overheated. We’ve had a lot of sun, and by Alaskan standards, it’s been a heat wave. I felt a bit of the cool air from the glacier, wafting up to cool me down, but the sun was going strong all day, and never let up. It was a scorcher.