Brady Glacier Southeast

Brady Glacier Southeast Travel Blog

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Moose on the ice! Only a few bones...

The Brady Glacier is an icefield. An icefield is an extensive sheet of ice.  The key word here is ‘sheet’. If you think of alpine and valley glaciers as being frozen waterfalls and rivers of ice then you would think of an icefield as being an upside down diner plate of ice. There is a large portion of an icefield that is closer to flat than it is to being ‘mountainous’.  They are not really flat, but they get close.  And you’ll see this in the photos: often the horizon doesn’t look ‘straight’.  It’s not that the photo is crooked! It’s the gently sloping icefield sloping off toward the ocean.

 

Some of the ice in an icefield comes from valley glaciers; some comes from accumulated snow falling on the icefield itself.  The south end of the Brady icefield reaches almost to the ocean but the high center portion of the ‘diner plate’ is about 800 meters elevation.

One foot on land, one foot on the glacier.
  In winter the snow covers the entire thing, but in summer it melts back at the lowest elevations.  The ‘zone of accumulation’ is that portion of the glacier where the snow doesn’t melt, and ice builds up.  The Brady icefield gets a lot of ice added to it each year from the dozens of valley glaciers that feed into it, but it also has its own zone of accumulation above about 600 meters. 

 

Although the Brady Glacier is huge, it is not easy to get to.  There are no roads, no airports.  Helicopters are not allowed in wilderness areas, small planes with skis can land on the glaciers but these are very expensive to charter.  So we used the route that went by ‘Spur Lake’.  We camped the night next to the icefield and got up early the next day.  We did a day hike on the ice, getting back to the tent the same evening.  The captions on the photos tell the story.

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Moose on the ice! Only a few bones…
Moose on the ice! Only a few bone…
One foot on land, one foot on the …
One foot on land, one foot on the…
We are on the ice but near the edg…
We are on the ice but near the ed…
Good walking.
Good walking.
Looking across the Brady icefield …
Looking across the Brady icefield…
Water running on the surface of th…
Water running on the surface of t…
Solid blue ice just a few centimet…
Solid blue ice just a few centime…
There use to be a lake here.  May …
There use to be a lake here. May…
Back from the glacier-land interfa…
Back from the glacier-land interf…
Moss growing on the ice.  The surf…
Moss growing on the ice. The sur…
Looking back towards Taylor Bay.
Looking back towards Taylor Bay.
Looking across the Brady to the Fa…
Looking across the Brady to the F…
Really good walking!
Really good walking!
Walking on the ice is not difficul…
Walking on the ice is not difficu…
Crampons and trekking poles make i…
Crampons and trekking poles make …
Moose jaw and moss.
Moose jaw and moss.
Small crevasse.
Small crevasse.
The crevasses interconnect so we w…
The crevasses interconnect so we …
When you are walking in the same d…
When you are walking in the same …
Crevasses vary in width and depth.…
Crevasses vary in width and depth…
Now is careful time...
Now is careful time...
Crevasse tight ropin
Crevasse tight ropin'
Foots n Views - Brady Glacier Sou…
Foots 'n Views - Brady Glacier So…
Crevasse field. We did not go here…
Crevasse field. We did not go her…
Glacier dammed lake.
Glacier dammed lake.
Crevasse to the right, crevasse to…
Crevasse to the right, crevasse t…
Brady Glacier Southeast
photo by: beinak