Diamond Princess Day 6 – Glacier Bay

We woke this morning as the ship came into Icy Strait on her way to Glacier Bay.

Princess is one of a select few cruise lines permitted to cruise the pristine waters of Glacier Bay. Just west of Juneau, this breathtaking national park boasts some of the world’s most spectacular tidewater glaciers, such as Margerie Glacier, which often drops colossal chunks of ice into the sea. Not surprisingly, Glacier Bay National Park and large glaciers are part of a UNESCO World Heritage Site comprising Alaska’s park system.
During our scenic cruise,  Park Rangers joined the ship at about 6.15am, as we entered Icy Strait, to share their knowledge of this amazing place and give us a commentary  while we sailed past the glaciers.

As we sailed through Glacier Bay, we saw several glaciers, including Reid Glacier, Lamplugh Glacier and John Hopkins Glacier and we were surprised at how many hundreds of pieces of ice and icebergs we saw floating around the ship – there were some small ones that would have been the size of a dinner plate and many large ones as big as a car.

We then sailed into the Tarr Inlet where we hovered for an hour in front of the Margerie Glacier, the face of which is over a mile long and approximately 250 feet above the water surface and at least 100 feet below the water surface.  We were lucky enough to see several glacier calvings, which is where chunks of ice break form the glacier face, tumbling down the surface and crashing into the water, making a thundering sound.  The captain turned the ship through 360 degrees during the hour we were there to ensure that everybody had the opportunity to view this magnificent glacier.

Next to it was the Grand Pacific Glacier, which had a wider face, but was almost black in colour because of the rock and debris that has been carried along the face front by the glacier.

We had rugged ourselves up with coats, scarves, beenies and gloves and joined most of the ships passengers out on the various vantage points on the decks from about 9.00am to about 1.30pm when the ship turned to make her way back down the bay to drop off the Park Rangers and continue her journey.

It was very cool, windy and overcast for the first part of the morning but by the time we reached Lamplugh Glacier the sun had come out and the skies were clearing, making for magnificent colours in the ice.

This was a fantastic experience and awe-inspiring as we watched nature at its best.

After a late lunch, we had a relaxing few hours in our stateroom followed by a lovely evening with our friends, Cheryl and Keith.

The ship has sailed back down Glacier Bay around into Icy Strait, through Cross Sound and out into the Pacific Ocean and she now has the occasional small roll.

2 Responses to “Diamond Princess Day 6 – Glacier Bay”

  1. Janet says:

    Lovely photos as always, particularly love the selfie at the end 🙂

  2. Selle-Belle says:

    Hi lovely,
    These photo’s are stunning….I was feeling the cold with you….brrrrr!!!! 🙂 I

    I’m VERY pleased you didn’t become the ‘Titanic’….lol!!!!

    Looking forward to reading your next installement of your amazing holiday!!!! 🙂

    Lots of love & friendship,

    Shell-Belle xxoo

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