The Mendenhall Glacier

Sat, Jul 15, 2017

Just 3.3 miles up the road is the fabulous Mendenhall Glacier.  We’re just 12 mi from downtown Juneau, Alaska.

Here’s the glacier from the visitor center trail.  As recently as 1930, the glacier extended to the point where I’m standing and there was no lake.

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Glacial ice is blue because blue light has a short wavelength and is able to penetrate the ice, reflect and make it back to your eyeballs.  Green, yellow, orange and red have longer wavelengths and are absorbed.

It’s the same reason that lakes are blue.  Water is clear but the color is from light that penetrates to the bottom, reflects and makes it back out.  Green, yellow, orange and red can’t.  Blue can.  The deeper the lake, the bluer the color.  You should see Crater Lake.  That blue will blow you away.

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