A Trip to North BC Coast (3) – Salmon Glacier

The third day began with heavy fog over Hyder. We gave up our originally planned second visit to Fish Creek, and drove around the “town” instead. Except for a brief excitement over sighting of a black bear and three cubs in a junk yard, we saw nothing interesting and the only serious shot I took is the grassy seashore in fog.

Not sure it was wise to drive up to Salmon Glacier in thick fog, we stopped at Fish Creek, the bear viewing place again. There was no bear. However, we were assured by several frequent visitors there that the fog would clear up by mid-day. So we  decided not to wait for bear any more and go to the glacier first. Just as we were leaving, a black bear appeared in the “blue lagoon” besides the creek. The setting was beautiful, but the light was terribly bad. The subject was virtually ignored by many visitors, saying “black bears do not count”. Well, for an amateur shoot-everything photographer like me, a bear is still a wonderful wildlife to photograph.

The bear just had a bite of some plants and then disappeared into the bushes.

 The drive to Salmon Glacier was really bumpy, but the scenery along Salmon River was nice, particularly in fog and when your car climbed to the top of the river valley.

 

It took a full hour for our clumsy RV to get to the first sight of the great glacier. As with all low-altitude glaciers, Salmon Glacier looked dirty at its terminus. But if you look closer and at its crevasses, it was amazing!

The sky began to clear up by the time we reached the highest view point. There were already many visitors there. The 180 degree view of the glacier was truly stunning!

I self-timed a shot to include myself in the scene.

 

We fully immersed ourselves in the scene for quite a long time, and then decided to adventure down to the right terminus of the glacier. It would have been a drive instead of a hike if our RV had enough gas. But the terminus was very dirty and ugly to look at close up, and we turned back without really getting to the terminus.

This is another glacier we saw on our way to the terminus of Salmon Glacier.

 

The weather had become so nice and the view was so inviting, that we wanted to spend the night right in front of the glacier. We (and perhaps only two other car loads of visitors) owned the million-dollar view that night!

It would have been a great waste to spend the night sleeping. When the stars began to show up, I started my star trail shots. This time, instead of a single hour-long exposure, I made multiple 10-minute exposures for stacking by software later on. The moon came out behind us to shine on the glacier. Quite a few meteors shot through the sky (oh, this is the time of the annual meteor shower of Perseid!) and one of my shots caught one right over the glacier. Perfect! That made my night’s work.

The sunrise next day was not as spectacular as I wished, and the dirty lower part of the glacier was more and more an eye sore to me.

 

The glacier would look much nicer to if it has a layer of snow dust to cover itself in autumn, wouldn’t it?

 

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