Icy Strait to the Inian Islands

Aug 23, 2018 - National Geographic Sea Lion

Today offered a menagerie of wildlife as National Geographic Sea Lion cruised through Icy Strait to the Inian Islands. These historic waters were first mapped by the British Admiral George Vancouver in 1794, and that map was used by the conservationist John Muir to locate the remains of the receding ice age. As described on the map was a wall of ice, which Muir found was the entrance to what is now known as Glacier Bay National Park.

Further along Icy Strait is an amazing group of islets called the Inian Islands, which are at the mouth of Icy Strait. This allows for a dense congregation of wildlife as the tidal waters ebb and flow through this narrow passageway, mixing inside passage waters with open ocean waters.

Even before we dropped anchor, we were greeted by a very energetic humpback whale who continuously breached and slapped its tail as we neared the Inian Islands. Not much is certain as to the reason of this behavior, but it is certainly an astonishing spectacle. The ability to launch a 45-ton animal out of the water is a great feat of strength.

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About the Author

Paolo Marra-Biggs

Naturalist/Expedition Diver

Paolo grew up just five miles from the ocean and for as long as he can remember, he’s always spent his free time in and around the water. As a high school student, he volunteered during the summer at the Monterey Bay Aquarium and he was an active Junior Lifeguard. 

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