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Foggy Adventures in Glacier Bay

09-04-2012

By Jackie Hedgpeth, Expedition Guide, Wilderness Explorer

Our day of adventure began with peaceful whale watching in Dundas Bay inside Glacier Bay National Park. The weather was cloudy, and as we entered the bay a low, thick fog blanketed the water making it necessary to reduce speed and blow the fog horn regularly.

Everyone commented on the thick fog, and the inability to see the water or low level landscape. We could see clearly the mountain sides and peaks but nothing below shrouded in the fog.

It seemed we were in a temperature inversion weather pattern, and due to lots of rain the previous day, a lot of very cold water was on top of the salt water making the dew point temperature spread very narrow thus creating the fog. We finally made it to our new anchorage point and could see absolutely nothing all around the vessel.

We proceeded with the hike and kayak operations in this very eerie and quiet setting. As we left the vessel in our kayaks, the sound of the generator faded, and we paddled toward what we knew to be the shore. Finally we broke free of the thickest fog and spotted the shore and a couple of curious sea otters who were checking us out as we emerged from the thick fog.

The skiffs were shuttling groups to the shore for hikes in the outwash plains and muskegs still adorned with the fog. We came upon a Brown Bear sow with two cubs searching the beach for food. They strolled on and disappeared in the fog.

Bear and cubs

Mama bear and cubs foraging for food

foggy bears

Bears walk the shoreline in Glacier Bay

The beauty was incredible and yet so very unique that all of the guests felt they were getting a most unusual Alaskan experience. The weather bands moved through the bay all day long with the fog moving but persisting around the Wilderness Explorer throughout the day.

kayaks

Kayaking through the serene fog

It was truly a beautiful and surreal weather experience for our full day of adventures and explorations in Dundas Bay.

kayk and foggy bay

Heading out for a kayak



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