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Top Attractions in Kluane National Park and Reserve

Hubbard Glacier

Hubbard Glacier is a glacier, located in eastern Alaska and part of Yukon Canada, named after Gardiner Hubbard. The longest source for Hubbard Glacier originates 122 kilometres from its snout and is located at about 61°00′N 140°09′W, approximately 8 kilometres west of Mount Walsh with an altitude around 11,000 feet . A shorter tributary glacier begins at the easternmost summit on the Mount Logan ridge at about 18,300 feet at about 60°35′0″N 140°22′40″W. Before it reaches the sea, Hubbard is joined by the Valerie Glacier to the west, which, through forward surges of its own ice, has contributed to the advance of the ice flow that experts believe will eventually dam the Russell Fjord from Disenchantment Bay waters. The Hubbard Glacier ice margin has continued to advance for about a century. In May 1986, the Hubbard Glacier surged forward, blocking the outlet of Russell Fjord and creating "Russell Lake." All that summer the new lake filled with runoff; its water level rose 25 metres, and the decrease in salinity threatened its sea life. Around midnight on October 8 the dam began to give way. In the next 24 hours an estimated 5.3 cubic kilometres of water gushed through the gap, and the fjord was reconnected to the ocean at its previous level. This was the second largest glacial lake outburst flood in recorded history, and had the equivalent flow of about 35 Niagara Falls. In spring 2002, the glacier again approached Bert Point. It pushed a terminal moraine ahead of its face and closed the opening again in July. On August 14, the terminal moraine was washed away after rains had raised the water level behind the dam it formed to 18 m above sea level. The fjord could become dammed again, and perhaps permanently. If this happens, the fjord could overflow its southern banks and drain through the Situk River instead, threatening trout habitat and a local airport. It takes about 400 years for ice to traverse the length of the glacier, meaning that the ice at the foot of the glacier is about 400 years old. The glacier routinely calves off icebergs the size of a ten-story building. Where the glacier meets the bay, most of the ice is below the waterline, and newly calved icebergs can shoot up quite dramatically, so that ships must keep their distance from the edge of the glacier in Disenchantment Bay.

Mount Saint Elias

Mount Saint Elias may also refer to Mount Carmel Mount Saint Elias, also designated Boundary Peak 186, is the second highest mountain in both Canada and the United States, being situated on the Yukon and Alaska border. It lies about 40 kilometres southwest of Mount Logan, the highest mountain in Canada. The Canadian side is part of Kluane National Park, while the U.S. side of the mountain is located within Wrangell-St. Elias National Park and Preserve. Its name in Tlingit is Yaaséitaa Shaa, meaning "mountain behind Icy Bay", and is occasionally called Shaa Tléin "Big Mountain" by the Yakutat Tlingit. It is one of the most important crests of the Kwaashkkhwáan clan since they used it as a guide during their journey down the Copper River. Mount Fairweather at the apex of the British Columbia and Alaska borders at the head of the Alaska Panhandle is known as Tsalxhaan, it is said this mountain and Yaaséitaa Shaa were originally next to each other but had an argument and separated. Their children, the mountains in between the two peaks, are called Tsalxhaan Yatxi . The mountain was first sighted by European explorers on July 16, 1741 by Vitus Bering of Russia. While some historians contend that the mountain was named by Bering, others believe that eighteenth century mapmakers named it after Cape Saint Elias, when it was left unnamed by Bering. Mount Saint Elias is notable for its immense vertical relief. Its summit rises 18,008 feet vertically in just 10 miles horizontal distance from the head of Taan Fjord, off of Icy Bay. In 2007, an Austrian documentary movie called "Mount. St. Elias" was made about a team of skier/mountaineers determined to make "the planets longest skiing descent" – ascending the mountain and then skiing nearly all 18,000 feet down to the Gulf of Alaska; the movie finished editing and underwent limited release in 2009. The climbers ended up summiting on the second attempt and skiing down to 13,000 feet.

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