Thursday, July 12, 2012

Prince William Sound, Alaska

Recently my girlfriend's dad and sister were visiting us here in the great state of Alaska, also known as America's Prime Rib, both because of its steak-cut-like shape and its exorbitant food prices. To celebrate the 4th of July, we decided to take a tour of Prince William Sound via the 26 Glacier Cruise anchored out of Whittier. After an interesting drive through the Whittier tunnel, in which I felt strongly like Roland Deschain in that one scene from The Gunslinger, we arrived to the harbor  feeling wet, cloudy, slightly cold and raining steadily.
What I imagine lies behind the doors of the emergency pulloff shelters.

 Much to my surprise, however, the weather cleared up about 5 miles out into the sound, and as we finished a delicious lunch on the boat deck, we began to see some cool shit. Here are some pictures I took throughout the Sound. I highly recommend the 26 Glacier Cruise for anyone visiting Anchorage that wants to see some cool Alaskan stuff. It's not often that people envy me for living in such a cold, remote place, but this is one of those times. Enjoy.
Glaciers are the result of mountain constipation, as you can see from this inset of the State's digestive system.

What's that at the top of that waterfall? Oh, it's fresh snow. On July 4th. Ugh.

Any Al Qaeda try to blow this up we'll got-damn freeze em out! USA! USA!

It's like driving a 35 foot boat through a giant margarita on the rocks.

Three glaciers and the American Flag flying in the wind on the 4th of July. You will never be as patriotic as this.

I don't know who is in that boat in this little cove but he has got his life figured out.

Surprise Glacer. That is its actual name, not a saying, like, "Surprise! Glacier!" to the most disappointed birthday child ever.

~350 feet tall above the water and about 300 feet below. 

These are sea lions. They lay on this rock not working and living off of taxpayer-funded seafood, probably.

This is a Kittiwake rookery, which is pretentious biologist talk for a place where ten thousand birds shit.

These are alpine glaciers, which hang high above on mountains. 

At least there are no direwolves south of here. 

It's like the bottom of a pit on a Mortal Kombat fatality. 

At first I was concerned about the weather, but the sky being overcast actually makes the glacial ice appear more blue.

While we were watching the glacier, a piece about the size of a passenger van cleaved off and fell in the water. It sounded like the loudest gunshot ever.

So many waterfalls. Don't go chasing them.

Harvard and Yale Glaciers. They're named that because they are way harder to get access to than most glaciers but when you get there you realize it's really not that different than all the rest of the glaciers. Look it up on wikipedia.

The child in me wants to ride a mountain bike down this slope. But the adult in me is waaaay too lazy to climb that hill.

The wake from the boat in the water. You have permission to sample this image for your desktop backgrounds.

A gang of otters, Los Norteanos Guillermos, confronts a rival gang, Los Matadores de Moluscos, in a turf battle over some ice. It did not end well.

I didn't see any oil on these birds at all. That Exxon Valdez verdict was a crock. No wonder the Court limited punitive damages.

Serpentine Glacier, if you're following along on the map. 

This is probably my favorite picture of the trip. Surprise Glacier, a waterfall, an alpine glacier and a fresh dusting of snow at the top. America, Fuck Yeah!

With as many waterfalls as there were, I was surprised by the lack of mermaids.

Pepsi Presents Glacial Breeze Cola Only for a Limited Time Glacier. The U.S. Forest Service sold out. 

I bet you $5 I could throw a football over them mountains.

This would be a great place for a secret villain's inner chambers.

The 26 Glacier Cruise is only $139 for a 5 hour cruise and the offer a no seasickness money-back guarantee. I heartily endorse it as a great way to see some really interesting Alaskan stuff up close and personal.

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