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5 Reasons to Go Glacier Kayaking on Grewingk Glacier Lake

Glacier Lake Kayaking is one of the unique curated excursions that can be included in your stay at Stillpoint Lodge. Here are five reasons why you need to try this life changing experience in Kachemak Bay State Park, Alaska's first state park.

1. Because it’s a fantastic, accessible adventure

Few outings let you experience Alaska in such a hands-on way as a paddle on Grewingk Glacier Lake, which sits at the foot of Grewingk Glacier in Kachemak Bay State Park, a quick boat ride from Stillpoint Lodge. A short hike on a well-maintained trail leads you to the lake, where a stunning panorama of mountains and ice opens before you. On the gravel beach at the water’s edge, you’ll don a life vest and step into a sleek kayak, one of Alaska’s most time-honored modes of transport. Paddling in your silent craft, you’ll weave between icebergs that float on the lake in the most surprising shapes—a rooster’s head, an iron, a whale. With ice around you and alpine peaks above you, this is Alaska at its best.



2. Because glaciers are dynamic

Glaciers are not static things. They are very slow-moving rivers of ice that grind down the mountains in their paths. Grewingk is about 13 miles long, flowing off the Connecticut-sized Harding Ice Field, which sits atop the Kenai Mountain range. From the seat of your kayak, you will witness this. As this belt of ice moves imperceptibly downhill, hunks of it break off into the lake at the foot of the glacier. If you’re lucky, you will hear this in the distance and feel the swell as a berg enters the lake, experiencing the dynamic nature of this river of ice for yourself.



3. Because of blue

The ice cubes in your freezer are white, but glaciers are blue. Grewingk glows a pale robin’s egg hue between the rocky peaks around it. The blue hue results from the way the ice—which is far more compact and airless than ice cubes—absorbs other colors in the spectrum far better than blue. It is an impossible color, a blue interrupted by the black of crevasses, the white of snow. As the glacier melts into the lake, it drops the rocky dust the ice has chiseled off the mountains, turning the lake a milky tan. A paddle on the lake gets you closer to the otherworldly blue of the ice, a color that will ring in your memory forever.



4. Because now is the time

Glaciers are global treasures. They provide freshwater. They produce fertile soils. They leave deposits of sand and gravel that people have been relying on for centuries. With climate change, we’re losing many of them, even here in Alaska. Grewingk has shrunk dramatically in recent decades. Now is the time to witness this treasure firsthand.



5. Because you will hold a piece of glacier in your hand

Who among us has touched a glacier? Who has held a piece of one in our hand? Glacier ice is ancient, the result of many, many snowfalls compressing into hardened ice. Glacier ice holds stories from other times, stories that, from the cockpit of your kayak, you can turn over in your palm as you experience the beauty and wildness around you.   


Want to learn more about this fantastical experience?

Glacier Lake Kayaking with Stillpoint Lodge >


Book a stay at Stillpoint Lodge to experience the beauty of Alaska yourself!


by: Miranda Weiss

Author of Tide, Feather, Snow: A Life in Alaska


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