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Mendenhall Glacier and Mount Roberts Tramway & Hike

Sunday, July 22, 2007

semi-overcast 0 °F

I'm feeling out of sorts this morning (translation: I'm in a bad mood, but for no apparent reason) so we end up skipping church. I don't know where or when church services are in the area and I'm not in the mood to ask anybody. Yeah, I know -- not good. I later find out that there is a church within walking distance of the campground that we could have easily attended. I'm sure attending would have helped my moodiness. I'm homesick.

Anyway, Jere plans our day since I'm not in the mood to make any decisions. So after breakfast we head out to Mendenhall Glacier.
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We look at the exhibits in the visitors center, watch their movie on the glacier, walk out to view the glacier,
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and then hike the East Glacier Trail. The trail takes about 90 minutes and goes up behind the waterfall adjacent to the glacier. It's a nice hike, and the views are very pretty, but the view from the trail really isn't any better than the view from the visitors center viewpoint.
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The one good thing about the hike: I'm feeling better after some fresh air and exercise.

It's supposed to rain tomorrow and be overcast on Tuesday, so we decide to ride the Mount Roberts Tramway in downtown Juneau. The campground manager said to only ride it if it wasn't cloudy. We find a parking spot close to the tramway. There are 4 large cruise ships in port, so lots of people in the area! The tram can take up to 50 people and runs every 6 minutes so we have a short wait to ride the tram.
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The tram takes us up about 1600 feet (I think) above the city of Juneau. They have a few things to look at, but the purpose of the tramway is really the view.
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The view from the tramway top is great, but we decide to keep hiking up the hill further and have a wonderful 2 hour hike, with lots of great scenery and wildflowers.
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There's some patches of snow beside the trail so of course Joe makes some snowballs to throw at his Dad.
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We hike back down to the tramway.
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We're starving so we decide to eat at the restaurant at the top of tramway. The food's good, but it takes a long, long time to make.

We ride the tram back down, visit a few of the gift shops at the bottom and then decide to make another quick trip up the tram (our ticket gives us unlimited rides for the day) to buy an ornament at the gift shop at the top of the tram. The last tram leaves downtown at 9pm, so we get the last one up and then take the last tram down for the night.

On the way back to the trailer we stop at the fish hatchery to look at the salmon going up their ladder and the eagles in the area. Neat place, but too dark for pictures. There's a bald eagle on the shore eating a salmon. We'll return here tomorrow.

Posted by jengelman 13:07 Archived in USA Tagged family_travel

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