Glacier Bay, a Survey in Succession


Aerial view of Glaciers

According to the National Park Service (NPS), the wilderness of Glacier Bay includes tidewater glaciers, snow-capped mountain ranges, ocean coastlines, deep fjords and freshwater rivers and lakes.

What makes this wilderness unique is the role glaciers have played in this environment for at least the last seven million years. Most glaciers in the bay are experiencing significant retreat, thinning or stagnation, all giving rise to ecological succession. The succession processes are so evident in the park, that it offers various opportunities for scientific observation for geologists, plant ecologists and other scientists to study this dynamic environment.  Location: Glacier Bay National Park.  Author: Karl Spencer.