And as ice sheets disappear, many glaciers are becoming more accessible—and unstable. The second half of the trail is rocky and features a small stream crossing. Investigators say the victims were walking under a "hollowed out compressed snow mass which resembled a snow cave.". Extensive tourism and national-park systems are still relatively new for the country, he notes. Byron Glacier Trail, Girdwood: See 255 reviews, articles, and 210 photos of Byron Glacier Trail, ranked No.5 on Tripadvisor among 18 attractions in Girdwood. (The 1992 climbing season on Denali saw 11 deaths in a single three-week period, according to the Alaska Division of Public Health.) Deaths like these remain rare, but they’re also telling cases of a broader trend. The 3.2-mile (5.1 km) Byron Glacier Trail is flat and well-maintained. South of Anchorage, another popular glacier, Portage Glacier, is still referred to as a “roadside” glacier, though it’s receded too far to be seen from the road. Brittany Boegel was killed in the snow ceiling collapse. Not everyone shares this track record of safety. Every year, the Kenai Fjords National Park officers get complaints about tourists not being able to get close enough to Exit Glacier. The man who died was an experienced guide and driver, Ingi Már Aldan Grétarsson, born in 1954. As a glacier moves, the ice can be blocked by a knob of rock, causing a channel to form on the leeward side of the blockage. (60.773398, -148.843852) Open: No restrictions. The organization has added more warning signs and tries to remind people that glaciers can be dangerous, she says: “There are trails that go up to the toe of the glacier … but you know, people can’t resist scrambling up the sides. Le sentier offre plusieurs activités et sa meilleure utilisation est de avril à octobre. “One side of it is people who are basically ignorant to it, and [the other side is] people knowingly taking risks.”, The 5-year-old boy who was hit by the rock from Worthington Glacier earlier this year was hiking with his family on a commonly used trail in a state recreation site. Whether you’re there to play in the icy water with your dog or relax for a picnic, this is a fantastic hike. These “obstruction caves” are thought to be rare. She was a joy of life that focused on giving back to her family, friends, students, and communities, and we ask that everyone remember Brittany by carrying that forward. We could head straight for the face of the glacier, turn sharply to the right along what must be the lake shore or head straight into the sea of ice bergs. Authorities found several people had been hit by falling ice. Submit a letter to the editor or write to letters@theatlantic.com. Byron Glacier is a jewel! The growing risks to travelers on melting glaciers are cruel reminders of all the smaller-scale and sometimes unpredictable damages climate change can inflict—even in the places where its broadest impacts are most visible. According to news reports at the time, Thais Grabenauer, 59, had been taking pictures with her husband at the foot of Exit Glacier, a towering wall of ice that’s one of the most popular attractions in Kenai Fjords National Park. Boegel was a math teacher and Girls on the Run coach at Venture Academy in Minneapolis. Be careful it’s easy to fall and hurt yourself. Around the world, people are hurt on glaciers every year. Portage Valley has been known to trap clouds and weather among the tall peaks that surround Byron Glacier and so it is highly recommended to bring rain gear and an extra layer as wind can pick up even on a nice sunny day. Byron Glacier Trail, Girdwood: See 258 reviews, articles, and 215 photos of Byron Glacier Trail, ranked No.5 on Tripadvisor among 18 attractions in Girdwood. Once they form they could collapse at any time. There is something definitely alluring about glaciers.”. Notifications can be turned off anytime in the browser settings. Once you get to the end there’s a bunch of rocks and boulders. Ice caves can be treacherous and the first few times I hiked the trail towards Byron Glacier I didn’t even dare go in the cave. The last to die was Italian Alexander Hellweger, 28, who was crushed beneath ice falling of the Lake George Glacier in April of last year. To date, there haven’t been many incidents of injury on Iceland’s glaciers, says Hans Welling, a researcher with the University of Iceland who has written about glacier tourism. Comfort zone. Byron Glacier Trailhead. It briefs clients on safety, and the guides know the glacier well; Exit Glacier moves downhill about a foot a day in the summer, changing the nature of the ice day by day. Nevertheless, Exit Glacier Guides has never had an accident on the ice, he says. This hike is an easy, fun, fully accessible family-friendly trail that leads to overlook of Byron Glacier through lush forest. Location: At Girdwood, near Anchorage, off the Seward Highway. Anne takes flight! The glacier is just east of the small city of Valdez, which is wreathed by glaciers, some of which are remote while others are highway accessible. A stone’s throw and one 4-mile, one-way tunnel away from the perpetually precipitous town of Whittier (and as locals Be careful not to go to high up on the avalanche chutes since the snow underneath collapses and some point during the summer. Les chiens sont les bienvenus sur ce sentier mais seulement en laisse. Troopers say a man, as well as a six-year-old boy, suffered minor injuries. "Her mom, dad, and brothers were with her until the very end of her last earthly adventure. October 2, 2017 October 5, 2017 by rosedixonexpedition. On a single day last July, two people were killed at separate glaciers in south-central Alaska: A 32-year-old woman was crushed by a collapsing ice ceiling on Byron Glacier… The glacier has receded much farther than the trails surrounding it originally reached. But please practice glacier safety, and don’t climb on the glacier or explore underneath it, as the ice caves can fall in. Be smart and very cautious around glaciers! You'll know you're at the end when you see one random rock bench and wall with one random ice lookin cave over on the other side of the river. Try to stay to the right of the river when climbing up- it’s very hard to cross the river at points and you’ll get yourself wet the ice cave … Still, it’s likely that people visiting glaciers may not anticipate consequences quite as immediate as dislodged half-ton chunks of ice. In Iceland, where tourism has skyrocketed in the past decade, glaciers and ice caves have become key attractions. Norwegian glassy landscapes offer a perfect setting for hiking, challenging the walkers with slippery ground, inaccessible ice caves, and amusing with natural ice towers and crevasses. Every year, nearly 300,000 people come to Kenai Fjords National Park, which sprawls along the southern coast of Alaska’s Kenai Peninsula and includes the vast majority of the Harding Icefield. Byron Glacier Trail est un sentier aller-retour de 3.2 miles très fréquenté situé près de Girdwood, Alaska. It was one of those wrong place, wrong time tragedies that seem unlikely to happen again. It's a quick hop, skip, jump to the end of the trail, which is a pretty flat mile. Caution is advised if entering the ice caves, ice from the ceiling and rocks trapped in the ice may fall at anytime resulting in serious injury or even death. If you visit in the winter you can explore the beautiful ice cave below the glacier. On the Vatnajökull ice cap, the largest ice cap in Europe, where the ends of glaciers jump out onto gravel plains, guides and park managers have been busily extending trails and taking vehicles farther to access the glaciers as they recede across the landscape. All Rights There are also beautiful ice caves and rivulets to see, but be careful not to walk too far onto the ice of this tempting glacier. Now that glaciers have moved farther back, some entrepreneurs are opening other tour options on glacial lakes, such as kayaking. Exit Glacier is the sole glacier accessible by road in the park. Byron Glacier is about 40 miles southeast of Anchorage. He leaves behind a wife, three adult children and five grandchildren. The Byron Glacier Trail is scenic and easy to traverse. Symphony Lake. “There’s a way onto it higher up.”. Difficulty: easy Location:  Portage I have been seeing several posts with photographs of the Byron Glacier Ice Cave. ", Brittany Boegel (Credit: Venture Academy), Byron Glacier (Credit: Mike Ross, KTUU), An open letter from Regions Hospital health care workers to the community regarding COVID-19, Chinese probe successfully lands on the moon, WEATHER: Quiet December weather continues, Steelers stay perfect after winning coronavirus-delayed game over Ravens, Report: Twins reliever Trevor May signs with Mets. Others are casual tourists just trying to get close to the ice, like a 17-year-old who died earlier this year when he fell into a crevasse while hiking on Switzerland’s Gorner Glacier with his dad. Byron Glacier trailhead with two avalanche warning signs. The victims of climate change are already here. On a single day last July, two people were killed at separate glaciers in south-central Alaska: A 32-year-old woman was crushed by a collapsing ice ceiling on Byron Glacier, and a 5-year-old boy was hit by a rock falling from Worthington Glacier. Become a Member. “I would say maybe 10 percent of the [customers] have been on a glacier before,” Kreznar estimates. "Brittany loved to travel and explore the world and left us doing what she loved," a statement reads from her family. I would definitely do this again. This short day hike—with an easily accessible trailhead a few hundred meters from the Begich Boggs Visitor Center—offers you big views of the Byron Glacier. To the left is a ridge that overlooks Portage Glacier, but is quite a scramble to get up and down from. 31.3, 33.7: waterfall entrance (tool or arrow/bullet needed to break the ice waterfall) 2. To date, there have been no known ice-cave fatalities in the state, but several people have been killed by falling ice when they approached too close to glaciers. Far more often, glacier caves form when melting water carves a passage through the ice. A half-ton piece of the glacier calved off as the couple was snapping, killing Grabenauer and injuring her husband. TheAtlantic.com Copyright (c) 2020 by The Atlantic Monthly Group. But can anyone guide into how to access this ice cave.I do not want to miss the chance to view it if only from the outside. The hanging glacier in the distance was enough to capture my attention but I continued to be drawn to the ice cave. Venture Academy is forever grateful to Brittany for her work and dedication.". We want to hear what you think about this article. Climbing on the ice is not recommended and exploring inside of ice caves has proved fatal for some. 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