We were self conscious about our stinky feet, so Eric set us up with a hose and soap. We were able to use the kites three times. Blackburn Haines Loop Alsek Traverse: Haines - Gl. Josh Mumm started later in the day and caught up as we were setting up camp. Bus tours from Seward visit Exit Glacier and boat tours visit other parts of the park, The park maintains public-use cabins and shelters in coastal areas and at the edge of the Harding Icefield. Headlands were the most affected areas. Publisher for the University of Washington Member of the Association of University Presses Some of these are on native corporation lands, with a portion of the use fee going to the native community. Harding Icefield is the star of this natural attraction, which features a number of tidewater glaciers (such as the half-mile-wide Exit Glacier), calming fjords, and small icebergs. The remainder of the park is accessible by boat, airplane, and hiking. The Kenai Fjords area was not considered to be of the first priority for park designation under the ANCSA. The Harding Ice Field is one of only 4 remaining ice fields in the country, and is also the largest ice field contained entirely within the United States’ borders. Thanks for the update. New lands exposed in former glacier beds are at first stony, lacking in soil. By early April, Park Service personnel established oil containment boom lines across the mouths of salmon streams and conducted preliminary inventories of plants and animals that might be affected by the oil. See Homer and multiple glaciers, as well as getting a look at some remote Alaskan communities. Aerial photographs show that the nunataks in the Harding Icefield have increased in area by an average of 30 percent since 1950. The Halemaumau Crater is the center part of the Kilauea Caldera, an active volcano near Hilo on the Big Island of Hawaii. Sounds like this has happened several times at Seward trail heads. Goode, Marcus Baker Tsina Glacier, Valdez  The park's largest glacier is Bear Glacier. , On December 2, 1980, the ANILCA bill was signed into law by Jimmy Carter, converting Kenai Fjords to a national park. (minimum 2 passengers) 30 minute tour: $175 per person 1 hour tour: $275 per person Image of kenai, cold, serene - 161391253 Change ), You are commenting using your Facebook account. The park is inhabited by a variety of terrestrial and marine mammals, including brown and black bears, moose, sea otters, harbor seals, humpback and killer whales. Mike Mumm drove with us to Seward to recover our two vehicles. The park contains the Harding Icefield, one of the largest ice fields in the United States. The nearest large town is Seward, immediately to the east of the park on Resurrection Bay. The park's highest point is an unnamed peak of 6,450 feet (1,970 m) in the Kenai Mountains. Just completed the traverse (group of 4).  Seward is a destination for cruise ships. Katmai and Lake Clark Harding Icefield Trail, Kenai Fjords National Park. You can also take a boat trip to explore it, which is what we would recommend. Bonus: Most boat tours include a stop at a calving glacier. Forested portions of the park are dominated by conifers, with deciduous forests confined to areas recently vacated by glaciers. Our warm winter is very likely a necessary ingredient for such an unusual winter retreat, but I think there’s a fair dose of coincidence – the ice was declining in stability all summer and it happened to cross a threshold in the fall when it separated from a bit of north shore where it was pressed against cliffs.  Internal Park Service documents envisioned an 800,000-acre (1,250.0 sq mi; 3,237.5 km2) park protecting the coast and the icefield, but this conflicted with the Seward National Recreation Area and a proposed expansion of the Kenai National Moose Range. They are often found in the colder climates and higher altitudes of the world where there is sufficient precipitation for them to form. the Kukak Volcano to Mt. Harding Icefield is the largest icefield in the United States and is home to a multitude of wild plants and animals including sea otters, sea lions, and whales. I also experimented with focussing on my skis, and trusting the kite, which resulted in accidentally getting airborne twice. According to the Park Service, it's 50 miles wide at its largest point (that would take two back-to-back marathons to cross it). The gas tank had been drilled from below while parked at the trailhead.  It is the only Alaska national park that did not originally allow subsistence use by Native Americans, but native village corporations continue to have interests in inholdings within the park, and have since established subsistence rights on those properties. It is believed that coastal subsidence and rising water levels have inundated many sites, as the shoreline was the place richest in resources for early peoples. Eleven mine sites have been documented and two of the mine sites have been determined to be eligible for the National Register of Historic Places.  A lodge was developed by the Port Graham community on Aialik Bay. The most accessible glacier, and the only portion of the park accessible by road, is Exit Glacier.  The first park improvements focused on improving access to Exit Glacier. As the surface elevation of the ice field decreases due to climate change, the receding ice exposes bare rock and essentially increases the size of the nunataks, providing new habitat for alpine vegetation. Or, you could hire a guide for the trip. Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, Hawaii Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, Hawaii. The book is about their incredible 4,000 mile journey from Bellingham to Kotzebue. Most glaciers in these parks terminate on land, though a few terminate in lakes. Wildlife thrives in icy waters and lush forests around this vast expanse of ice. Harding Icefield: Seward to Homer Katmai NP Traverse Haines to Juneau Traverse Chugach Traverse Aniak to Dillingham Fairweather, Yakutat to Haines IRS Volcanoes Traverse Kuskulana Glacier, Mt. A network of trails from the Nature Center provide access to the glacier, and the 7.4-mile (11.9 km) Harding Icefield Trail. At a minimum, I’d practice crevasse rescue (setting an anchor, using pruskis to climb, etc.)  Predominant rock types include shale and graywacke, with greenstone, tuff and chert. This trail is referred to by rangers as “the best day hike in the National Park Service.” The Harding Icefield Trail begins at the Exit Glacier Nature Center and travels to the edge of the Harding Icefield. The crown jewel of this Alaskan park is the 735-square-mile Harding Icefield. The Harding Icefield is an expansive icefield located in the Kenai Mountains of the Kenai Peninsula in Alaska. , Several gold mines from historical times have been documented in the park. Hoodlums… to steal gas. Wildlife in the park consists of various seabirds (including puffins), bald eagles, peregrine falcons, harbor seals, sea lions, sea otters, whales, porpoises, moose, black bears, brown bears, wolverines, coyotes, mountain goats, and more. The park is named for the numerous fjords carved by glaciers moving … , Birds that nest in this park include bald eagle, the Peale's subspecies of peregrine falcon, black-billed magpie, and Steller's jay. According to the United States Department of Agriculture, the Plant Hardiness zone at Exit Glacier Visitor Center at 463 ft (141 m) elevation is 4b with an average annual extreme minimum temperature of -20.3 °F (-29.1 °C).  Alaskan opposition to ANILCA prompted President Jimmy Carter to proclaim Kenai Fjords National Monument under the provisions of the Antiquities Act on December 1, 1978, pending final passage of an Alaskan lands bill. Bay Ski Alaska Mt.  More than thirty glaciers originate in the icefield, which first formed about 23,000 years ago. Another site was used from 1785 to 1820. Hey Luc was this trip in April 2019? When the resupply arrived, Caroline and Pat found an unexpected 2 pounds of organic peas. Watching them troubleshoot, I concluded that their tranquility must partly be due to their experience managing equipment on fishing boats. In particular, Sitka alder is capable of fixing nitrogen, supporting itself and enriching the soil. The site showed that contrary to earlier beliefs, portions of the park had been used over a long term by native peoples. Some sites had been active into the 1980s.  The same day the National Park Service formed an Alaska Task Force to study proposed park lands. The terrain remained interesting throughout the route. , At the time of the park's establishment, there were few permanent inhabitants.  It is a relatively small and accessible park by Alaskan national park standards, about 88% as big as Yosemite National Park.  Most of the lands claimed were on the coastline. (I’ve presented some explanation of this reward vs. challenge space, audio file here). The wildlife is equally as impressive here, featuring beautiful falcons and black bears. Change ), You are commenting using your Twitter account. Spend 30 minutes or 1 hour touring Kachemak Bay and the Harding Icefield. Harding Icefield Trail. We were wondering how long it would take for the ice to retreat beyond where we were able to scramble out… it didn’t take long!  A 1993 Park Service survey documented several village sites dated between 1200 AD and 1920. At the edge of the Kenai Peninsula lies a land where the ice age lingers.