Sunday, November 01, 2009

to the Defile!

After a wonderful night of sleep, I set out for an early morning hike. The night before the camp manager and host with the most, Rae, suggested I put on STABILicers and walk down the lake's moat to the head of the Seuss Glacier and the Defile. I thought the Defile was a proper noun and had a historical reason for such a name, but it turns out that the area just meets the definition of a defile, a narrow passage or gorge.

Moat ice and the uneven center of Lake Hoare

Moat ice that has air bubbles trapped in it and snow resting on it.

I love this picture because it looks like wind blowing across water, but the wind just shapes the lake's moat ice to appear the same way over time.

The part of the lake closest to the shore is known as the moat. Each summer, it melts out forming a gap between the shore and the rest of the lake which remains semi-frozen. I haven't been there in late summer so I'm not sure how frozen the center stays. However, I do know that the ice chunks that broke free in years past protrude up, as shown a couple pictures above. The center of the lake makes for difficult walking because it is uneven and the aged ice has partly thawed and refrozen many times which makes it less stable. The moat is a flatter surface so it makes for easy walking as long as you are wearing footwear that can grip the ice.

Seuss Glacier.

Ice grass growing up from the sea floor (or lots of columns of tiny air bubbles).

The walk to the end of the lake was lovely. Great morning light. Mesmerizing ice cracks below. Large mountains above. Giant glaciers. Not a soul to be seen or noise to be heard. No smells. Just sights and tastes if I really wanted to lick up some dirt or ice.

The defile.

Seuss Glacier and Lake Hoare.

When I reached the defile, I began walking the narrow passage up and over to Mummy Lake. That was my original destination, but I had meandered a little too much getting down the lake and didn't have time to make it. That was just fine. I was taking pictures and trying to soak up as much of this magical place as possible, not see as much as possible. It is hard to describe it. It makes me think of a fall day in the woods of New England where my thoughts don't wander any farther than the next bright colored leaf drifting down from the tree tops.

The end of the Seuss Glacier.

The sandy beach in front of the Seuss Glacier just waiting for the ice to melt and small snow kids to come play.

Seuss Glacier.

I have been trying to write this blog entry for a few days and I've struggled to come up with the right words. I'm not sure any words can really describe the experience. It is like a quote that I first saw about marathoning, "For those who understand, no explanation is necessary. For those who do not understand, no explanation will ever do." I'm just going to send this out the door so I can move on to the rest of my time at Lake Hoare. Enjoy!

1 comment:

  1. Yay Brody. I am so happy you had that chance. And, thanks for sharing.