The Exit Glacier, a 2.5-hour drive outside of Anchorage, has posts that mark the glacier’s rapid retreat. Exit Glacier is accessible year-round. Although it is one of the Harding Icefield's smaller glaciers, it is one of the most visited because of its easy accessibility and abundant hiking trails around and above the glacier. In Seward, Alaska, Exit Glacier is melting at an astonishing rate. In the spring of 1968, the first documented mountaineering party succeeded in crossing the Harding Icefield. I write history and I have great admiration for human ingenuity," Capra says. It's a little further to travel, but well worth it! This year's summer retreat has … Many glaciers go through centuries-long cycles this way. I write history and I have great admiration for human ingenuity," Capra says. As noted above, Yule Kilcher, Dave Johnston, Vin Hoeman, and Grace Hoeman were veterans of previous attempts; of the ten, only four–Bill Babcock, Dave Johnston, Yule Kilcher, and Vin Hoeman–hiked all the way across the icefield. I write history and I have great admiration for human ingenuity," Capra says. A network of short trails leads to different views of Exit Glacier, beginning at the Exit Glacier Nature Center and the parking lot. These last approximately 20–30 minutes. Upon the arrival of snow, usually in mid-November, the road to Exit Glacier is inaccessible to cars, due to a state road closure, but open to winter recreation, including snowmobiles, dogsleds, cross-country skiing, snowshoeing and fat bikes. Expedition members included Bill Babcock, Eric Barnes, Bill Fox, Dave Johnston, Yule Kilcher and his son Otto, Dave Spencer, Helmut Tschaffert, and Vin and Grace (Jansen) Hoeman. Currently, the glacier is retreating by around 10-15 feet (3-4.6m) per day. Twenty years ago, the dense, turquoise-hued glacier spilled over the cliffside, nearly kissing the trailhead parking lot at the valley floor. The Exit Glacier is especially notable for being a drive up glacier (similar to the Mendenhall Glacier of Juneau). The newly exposed landscape at the foot of Exit Glacier progresses from bare rock into temperate rainforest as plants reclaim the barren glacial till. With an outdoor fire pit, hot tub, pool table, dartboard, hammocks, bicycles, yoga mats and more, you’ll have everything you need for a perfect vacation when you stay at Glacier Bear Retreat! [6], Exit Glacier, Kenai Fjords National Park Project Jukebox, "A reporter bids farewell to Exit Glacier", "Retreating Exit Glacier has become an icon of climate change", "Harding Icefield loses mass; Exit Glacier shows big one-year retreat", "Exit Glacier Area - Kenai Fjords National Park (U.S. National Park Service)", "Ranger Programs - Kenai Fjords National Park (U.S. National Park Service)", "Wildlife Viewing at Exit Glacier - Kenai Peninsula, Alaska Department of Fish and Game", https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Exit_Glacier&oldid=990677058, Glaciers of Kenai Peninsula Borough, Alaska, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, This page was last edited on 25 November 2020, at 21:55. Tourists looking to experience Exit Glacier will have to be creative when looking for a room. (Google Map Coordinates: 60.1782633,-149.6494389). It is a place where you can witness up close how glaciers re-shape a landscape and learn how plant life reclaims the barren rocky land exposed by a glacier's retreat. If Exit Glacier is high on your to-do list, you might like to know a little bit more about it. The Exit Glacier Area is open year-round. Exit Glacier has been receding for decades at an alarming rate of 43 feet a year, according to the National Park Service, which has been monitoring its retreat for decades using photography and, more recently, by satellite. Thick stands of alder with some willow come next, followed by black cottonwood forest that slowly gives way to shade-tolerant mountain hemlock. The world has become far too hot for the aptly named Exit Glacier in Alaska. It is one of the most accessible valley glaciers in Alaska and is a visible indicator of glacial recession due to climate change. Last year, according to end-of-summer measurements, it lost about 136 feet. Glacier Bear Retreat is a spectacular 4 bedroom/3.5 bath luxury home located inside Glacier National Park on the west side of Lake McDonald. A protective tomb of gravel likely encased the trees more than 1,000 years ago, when the glacier was advancing, ... per year since 2005. The nature center includes exhibits about the Exit Glacier area, an Alaska Geographic bookstore, and rangers to help answer questions about the area. For years, he's documented Alaska's changing climate and Exit Glacier's retreat. Along the way, the party made a first-ever ascent of Truuli Peak, a 6,612-foot (2,015 m) eminence that protrudes from the northwestern edge of the icefield near Truuli Glacier. “My concern is the denial. It's located approximately 550 miles from the state capital, Juneau (and vicinity). Shuttle Bus/Taxi Service: For transportation between Seward and the Exit Glacier area. Images captured by RapidEyes satellites … It received its name for serving as the exit for the first recorded crossing of the Harding Icefield in 1968. There are some glaciers you can drive to, but very few that you can stroll to. Proceed 8.4 miles. The Exit Glacier area is the only part of the park accessible by road. From 1815 to 1999, Exit Glacier retreated at an average rate of 43 feet a year, though at widely varying rates, according to a Park Service analysis. As it retreated, the terminus also became narrower and transformed from a piedmont glacier to a wide valley glacier to a narrow [5], Ranger-led walks to Exit Glacier are available at 10 am, 11 am, 1 pm, and 2 pm daily during the summer season. I write history and I have great admiration for human ingenuity," Capra says. Middle latitude glaciers are located either between the Tropic of Cancer and the Arctic Circle, or between the Tropic of Capricorn and the Antarctic Circle. [2][3] Exit Glacier Terminus Mapping Historic positions of the Exit Glacier terminus have been mapped using existing aerial photography. Bikes and pets are not allowed on the trails at anytime. Lichens and pioneer plants colonize rock and silt close to the ice. Seasons. Ten people were involved in the crossing, which went from Chernof Glacier east to Resurrection Glacier (Later renamed Exit as the newspaper reported that the group would be descending the "Exit Glacier"). If you are looking for a longer day hike, don't miss the 8 mile round trip Harding Icefield Trail. The rapid retreat of the glacier highlights the effects of climate change and how it affects Alaska's coastal glaciers. This photo dissolve from May 12, 2016 to September 23, 2016 shows the massive retreat of Exit Glacier from the summer of 2016. Results of the centerline method indicate that over the last 200 years, Exit Glacier retreated 2.5 km from its 1815 Little Ice Age maximum to its position in September 2015. “My concern is the denial. These dis­play indi­ca­tions of the Lit­tle Ice Age. The Glacier Overlook Trail is a well maintained trail which provides views of Exit Glacier. Today, Kenai Fjords staff map the terminus each fall with a GPS unit. Exit Glacier was one of the major landmarks that President Barack Obama visited during his historic trip to Alaska in 2015. The Athabasca Glacier is not alone in its retreat: Since 1960, glaciers around the world have lost an estimated 8,000 cubic kilometers (1,900 cubic miles) of ice. As it retreated, the terminus also became narrower and transformed from a piedmont glacier to a wide valley glacier to a narrow Exit Glacier is a glacier derived from the Harding Icefield in the Kenai Mountains of Alaska and one of Kenai Fjords National Park's major attractions. The road will end at the parking lot for the nature center. This one shows the glacier’s reach just 12 years ago. “My concern is the denial. For years, he's documented Alaska's changing climate and Exit Glacier's retreat. Follow this moderately strenuous trail to the Exit Glacier Overlook and view the glacier in its own glacially carved valley. ... that reflect how much a glacier grows or shrinks from one year to the next. In Kenai Fjords National Park, Exit Glacier was a popular attraction for just this reason. It is one of the most accessible valley glaciers in Alaska and is a visible indicator of glacial recession due to climate change. Bear-proof garbage and recycling bins are also available. “My concern is the denial. Exit Glacier is its aptly named point of egress. For years, he's documented Alaska's changing climate and Exit Glacier's retreat. According to local guide Rick Brown, speaking to National Geographic, the normal rate of retreat is 150 feet (46m) a year. Leashed pets and bicycles are allowed on the road to Exit Glacier and in the parking lot. With just a 10-to-15-minute drive out of Seward, you can hike right up to the Kenai Fjords National Park's Exit Glacier and experience the dense, blue ice while listening to it crackle. Exit Glacier retreats over 6 years. ... of lakes created as glaciers retreat. There is a 12-site, tent-only campground available about 1/4 of a mile before the nature center. For years, he's documented Alaska's changing climate and Exit Glacier's retreat. Exit Glacier has retreated about a mile in the past 100 years, according to park scientists. In the normal run of things, the Franz Josef Glacier would advance a little, and then retreat again. During the intervening 69 years between photographs, Yale Glacier has retreated as much as 6 kilometers (3.7 miles), with most of the retreat occurring post-1957. Exit Glacier is a glacier derived from the Harding Icefield in the Kenai Mountains of Alaska[1] and one of Kenai Fjords National Park's major attractions. "Ranger Talks" are held in the Exit Glacier Pavilion at 12:30 pm. I write history and I have great admiration for human ingenuity," Capra says. Flush toilets, near the nature center, are operable from Memorial Day through Labor Day. Exit Glacier retreated approximately 187 feet (57 m) from 2013 to 2014 and park scientists continue to monitor and record the glacier's accelerating recession.[4]. Here you can explore the trails, walk very close to an active glacier, or take a ranger-led walk. A guided hike to Marmot Meadows along the Harding Icefield trail is also available every day of the summer season at 9 am and lasts 3 to 4 hours. Learn a little more about the park by participating in a ranger-led program, which occur daily during the summer. As you drive along the road, you will notice signs that have year dates on them, and this is to indicated where exit glacier once was. After five centuries of expansion during the period known as the Little Ice Age, Exit Glacier reached its maximum expanse around 1815. The road often remains closed through early May, so be sure to check current conditions if you are visiting during the off season (fall through spring). A system of hiking trails lead to the terminus of the glacier and up to the Harding Icefield itself. Winter shuttle service: For transportation in the winter months. All are located in mountain ranges, notably the Himalayas; the Alps; the Pyrenees; Rocky Mountains; the Caucasus and Pacific Coast Ranges of North America; the PatagonianAndes in South America; and mountain range… For years, he's documented Alaska's changing climate and Exit Glacier's retreat. The resulting film, Glacier Exit, features stunning aerial footage of the Exit Glacier area in Kenai Fjords National Park. Picnic tables are located next to the parking lot. The Exit Glacier Area is open year-round. These walks are approximately 1–2 hours long. Planet’s RapidEye satellites have been observing Exit Glacier for years. plant life reclaims the barren rocky land. During the summer, potable water is available at the restroom building, through both water-fountains and a water-bottle filling station. A spur road of the Seward Highway leads to the only road accessible portion of the Kenai Fjords National Park. There are different trails that lead to different views of the glacier, and there is an accessible one mile loop trail to glacier view. Turn on to Herman Leirer Road, commonly called "Exit Glacier Road," at mile 3 of the Seward Highway (AK-9). As you were dri­ving, you most like­ly noticed signs with years post­ed along the road. Reusable water bottles are available in the bookstore. That is approximately enough ice to cover a two-kilometer-wide (1.2 mile-wide) swath of land between New York and Los Angeles with an ice sheet that is one kilometer (0.62 miles) tall. The rest of the year pit toilets are available. Was Exit Glac­i­er advanc­ing or retreat­ing dur­ing this short peri­od of time? Results of the centerline method indicate that over the last 200 years, Exit Glacier retreated 2.5 km from its 1815 Little Ice Age maximum to its position in September 2015. Upon the arrival of snow, usually in mid-November, the road to Exit Glacier is inaccessible to cars, due to a state road closure, but open to winter recreation, including snowmobiles, dogsleds, cross-country skiing, snowshoeing and fat bikes. Upon the arrival of snow, usually in mid-November, the road is closed to cars but open to a wide range of winter recreation:  from snow machines, dogsleds, fat-tire bicycles, and cross-country skiers. This one-mile accessible trail loops back to the parking area, or you can turn left at the trail-side kiosk and continue .6 miles on to the Exit Glacier Overlook via the Glacier Overlook Trail. Please consider the hours you come, carpooling, bicycling, or taking a shuttle or taxi, when you plan your trip. Both areas support glacier ice from mountain glaciers, valley glaciers and even smaller icecaps, which are usually located in higher mountainous regions. Watch an alaskan glacier melt. To hike all the trails, start by turning left at the nature center and following the accessible, Glacier View Loop Trail through the cottonwood forest to the Glacier View, a panoramic vista of Exit Glacier spilling down from the Harding Icefield. Remember to get there early as the car park quickly fills up. This mapping effort allows us to document the changes to the length and width of the terminus that we observe seasonally and annually. Higher temperatures and less snowfall have been causing many glaciers around the world to retreat recently. Exit Glacier: Walking tour with the ranger was excellent - See 857 traveler reviews, 767 candid photos, and great deals for Kenai Fjords National Park, AK, at Tripadvisor. Glaciers may retreat when their ice melts or ablates more quickly than snowfall can accumulate and form new glacial ice. Exit Glacier, which the Park Service says got over 181,500 visitors last year, is not Alaska's only walk-up glacier, albeit with a walk that has been getting longer as the glacier shrivels. Most of the melt occurred after August 15, … The expedition left Homer on April 17, bound for Chernof Glacier; eight days later, they descended Exit Glacier and arrived in Seward. “My concern is the denial. Note: There is limited parking at Exit Glacier, especially during the hours of 10:30 am - 3:30pm.
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