Thursday, July 28, 2011

Hubbard Glacier, Alaska

Disenchantment Bay, Alaska

Over six miles wide at its face, Hubbard Glacier appears small until you realize how far away it is, until you sail slowly toward it through icebergs and eerily blue water and mountains scarved in mist, until you realize that it's dwarfing this ship of yours, this ship that itself can dwarf a town.
Hubbard Glacier vast in the distance
Hubbard Glacier much closer--just the very end fits in the camera.
The most beautiful thing about Hubbard Glacier is how alive it is, one of the most active glaciers in the world, and one of the few still advancing.
300-foot high walls of Hubbard Glacier, calving modestly in the center.
The ice chunks that fall off can be as tall as 10-story buildings. 
As you stand at the rails in Disenchantment Bay—possibly the most inaccurately named bay in the world—watching the 400-year old ice at the glacier face break off and crash into the water, creating a sound the native people describe as white thunder, you'll marvel at the diversity this planet so generously offers, and how very small we all are in the face of it.    

Click here for an awesome time-lapse video of Hubbard Glacier on a sunny day.  Watch for calving at about 45 seconds.  The second video is a cloudy day, where the ship doesn't get half as close.  Thanks, Jeff Birmingham (radiofreebc), for the great videos. 

If you want to know more about how to see Hubbard Glacier for yourself, 
check out my new book on Amazon:   Cruising Alaska on a Budget,


  1. Thank you for sharing, we are 57 days out and my coworker is excited enough to purchase your book as well. Thank you for the advice!!

  2. I can't believe I didn't see this comment until now. I hope you had a wonderful time, and thank you for your kind words. I'm glad I could help.