Friday, January 1, 2010

Mendenhall Glacier

Freshwater glacier

pieces washed up on the shore

a couple of summers ago, I took a cruise to Alaska. as horrified as I still am when contemplating the consumerist/environmental absurdity of huge cruise ships and the accompanying "shore excursions", I was enthralled with Alaska itself. since it was not the height of tourist season, even going to small places was pleasant.

This glacier holds the distinction of being the only freshwater glacier I've ever seen. You can imagine the glee with which I picked up a freezing cold chunk of glittery glacial rock, right? You see, we would be told, over and over again, about the special crystallization pattern of glacial ice since it is condensed snow, but to actually pick a piece from the ground and give myself afterimages from the sun glinting off the circular pits was something else.

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