Ice Age Hiking in Alaska
After our visit to the wildlife refuge, we leisurely moved along the scenic road toward the coastal fishing town of Seward that edges Resurrection Bay along the Kenai Peninsula of Alaska. We landed at the Seward Military Resort, a popular yet understated destination for US active duty or retired military personnel and their guests.
The manicured grounds were beautiful, yet sensible. And they have a selection of yurts, guest rooms, or townhouses from which to choose. Since Mark is a US Army officer, it was an easy selection – and a perfect location for our planned activities. They also had an impressive Fish House I now realize was a key amenity to stage our activities for the next day.
But first, we took a tour by car around Seward then stopped for a bite to eat at Marina Café for some crispy halibut fish and chips. With calories to burn, we headed down the road for a hike to Kenjai Fjords National Park to visit Exit Glacier. It is one of the few places in the area where you can safely witness up close an ancient glacier with Ice Age origins that still re-shapes the landscape, and observe how plant life adapts to the barren rocky land exposed by a glacier’s retreat.
At the park, I appreciated that there were several trails from which to choose, from flat and easy to challenging. We decided on a self-led one-mile gradual climb though a cottonwood forest to a scenic edge of the glacier. On our way back, we chose a different route, where we carefully traversed rocks over a gentle river to access the terminus of the melting ice.
Once we arrived, we stood in front of the vast blue to take it all in and capture the scene in photos. We had already noted interpretive signage that warned visitors not to stand under an overhang of ice, as it can fall without warning, so we were careful!