At the beginning of this year I thought a lot about what I wanted to focus on and at the top of my list is, get outside and see more. I’ve always been someone that would rather drive than fly because I love to explore places I wouldn’t have thought otherwise but since moving to Juneau I’ve become way more homebound than I’d like. Maybe it’s because we moved here when Hudson was two months old and my husband was gone for weeks at a time or maybe it’s due to the not so pleasant weather this rainforest sees each week. What the reason, it is no longer. I’ve squashed it! It’s gone. So far this year I think I’ve seen more new places already than I did last. And the ice caves have by far been the highlight.
Let me start off by saying, this was terrifying. Probably one of the scariest things I’ve ever done. Or it felt that way at least! You can get to the Mendenhall Ice Caves all year round via the West Glacier trail which is a pretty intense all-day hike but during the winter (usually) the locals take an enormous shortcut and simply walk across the frozen lake. Last year, however, we rarely saw temps below 34! It was a very warm winter with very little snow and no chance of any decent sized body of water freezing. At one point I think the lake might have froze for like two days but certainly not enough to safely walk all the way to the glacier. Unless you’re a badass of course and live life on the edge. I secretly wish I could be one of those people. Honestly the thought of even walking into the ice caves no matter which way I entered sounded too “life on edge” for me. Funny because I’ve done it TWICE now! This time around I went with my friend Sydney Akagi, who took and edited the awesome video you’re about to watch, and unfortunately Hudson fell asleep in the stroller again so he didn’t get to see the caves. But he did get to explore the front of the glacier so I’ll call that a win. The Mendenhall Ice Caves appear in the Atlas Obscura, a guidebook and friendly tour-guide to the worlds most wondrous places and you can read more about them here.
If you aren’t familiar with us or haven’t been following along, we moved to Juneau Alaska from St. Pete Florida in August 2015 for my husbands job in the United States Coast Guard. Living here hasn’t been easy. We are nowhere near family, it’s rainy and gloomy 95% of the time, my husband is gone A LOT and I feel a bit stuck not being able to drive in or out of the city. But all of that aside, we live in a beautiful place with endless mountains to explore, rain or shine, and that is what I want Hudson and myself to take away from this place. I know he won’t remember much but I’m hoping that by documenting our adventures it will be something he holds onto for a lifetime. So cheers to more videos, photos and exploring! If you want to see more be sure to follow me on Instagram (@partyforthree) and hit subscribe on Youtube.