Endicott Arm terminates at Dawes Glacier. This blue river of ice normally has vast amounts of bergy bit-sized ice floating in front of it, making it difficult to navigate close to the face. Today, though, our ship was able to navigate within two miles, giving guests splendid views through the full windows in our dining area. Inflatable boats took visitors even closer to the spray of waterfalls coming from the hanging glaciers on either side of the fjord.

Brave souls accepted the challenge of the ‘Polar Plunge’ and leapt into the frigid, deep water.

They returned refreshed, to say the least.

This has been a week of fun educational activities for the Global Explorer youth program, led by Andy Putnam and me. A leader within the group wrote the following poem:

“Glaciers. Walls of ice, towering over the creatures that surround the flourishing land. Mountains. Towering rock that shapes canyons and creates beauty. Both are not so different. Life thrives on both through the hardships that comes with life. A life no one and nothing chooses, but a life we are all chosen for. A life we all take for granted. The ice is taken for granted. The mountains are taken for granted. Life is everywhere, the glacier walls, the grassed-over canyons, and the water. Just take a moment and look. Look at the glaciers and the mountains and the water and you will see the life that thrives within, and the beauty that hides in plain sight.

-Wren Jackman, 14 years old