Salmon Glacier is the largest road-accessible glacier in the world. The road to the glacier is 17 miles long and is mostly dirt, but the vistas it affords were so spectacular, we drove it twice. We crossed the Alaska-British Columbia border four times each way.
SO many beautiful scenes–we just kept taking pictures. Here’s Dave with fireweed and spruce.
Rocks along the road reminded us that the area was home to gold, silver, and copper mining. One mine operated steadily from 1910 to 1953 and then sporadically after 1953. Open-pit mining began in 1988. Today, workers fly in from as far away as Newfoundland for three-week shifts.
We were impressed by the mineralization (the white stripes) in the rocks.
We think the bright colors in the soil are a mining by-product.
Following the Salmon River toward the Glacier
Walk-through entrance to a mine passage
Abandoned mining equipment
The open-pit mine
The drive-through entrance into the mine passage shows how small the door is.
A broader view of the mine area
Marmot at the side of the road
The Salmon River flows through the valley.
Looking toward the ice field
Dave is getting closer to the glacier for a photo.
Stunning vistas were provided by the movement of clouds and sun.
Clouds in front of and behind a mountain
Clouds drifting between mountains
We loved the contrast of bright clouds with the mountains and foreground.
Every time we turned, the vista looked new.
Zooming in on the glacier shows its rough surface.
In this photo, the glacier looks smooth–except for those big cracks.
Speaking of big cracks, crevasses like these form when the center of the glacier moves faster than the outer sections.
This detail of the glacier looks like mountain peaks.
The spruces were quite near to us and made an interesting contrast with the glacier behind.
The salmon were spawning in the river. Once again, we were impressed by the difficulty of their journey.
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