Day 81: Sunday, August 4, 2013
The day was overcast with a chance of rain but it was our last opportunity to take a cruise so off we went on the Glacier Spirit with Stan Stephens Cruises. The boat had a nice, warm comfortable cabin and plenty of viewing areas outside. We left the Valdez Harbor about noon for our 6 hour cruise.
We went out on the Glacier Spirit
One of the crab boats from “Deadliest Catch” tv show
A boat heading out of the harbor
Foggy day for a boat ride
The scenery was breathtaking and there was plenty of wildlife. As we cruised close to shore we saw too many eagles to keep count. A pod of Dall Porpoise bow surfed for a while. They’re too fast to get a picture but beautiful to watch.
Sea Otters on Columbia Glacier tour from Valdez
We stopped to watch the sea otters on our way out into the bay
There were lots of eagles in the trees as we went close to shore but this pair was my favorite
Henry enjoying the view from the bow of the boat
Hundreds of juvenile Stellar Sea Lions
The highlight of the day was seeing a pod of Orcas with a calf.
Pod of Orcas with calf
We finally saw Orcas!
A pair of Orcas on Columbia Glacier tour from Valdez
The captain navigated through huge chunks of ice to get into Columbia Bay for a close up look at 10 mile wide Columbia Glacier.
Chunk of ice from the Columbia Glacier
The Columbia Bay was full of ice as we approached the Columbia Glacier
We were about two miles from the Columbia Glacier when I took this photo
This piece of ice from the glacier is big enough to be called an iceberg
A small sailboat sails around the ice
A chunk of ice from the glacier
The ride back to Valdez was just as spectacular.
We saw waterfalls as we went by
An oil tanker leaving Valdez
A couple of the small rocky islands we passed
Do you see the profile of a face on the right side of the rock?
This waterfall looks like it is coming out of the clouds
The waterfall is actually below a glacier