Bountiful Nature in Seward, Alaska

Seward Harbor

Seward is a small port town on the southern coast of Alaska, tucked in a harbor on the Kenai Peninsula. Surrounded by glacial water and snow-capped mountains, it is a small town with a big presence and abundant beauty.

 

Seward Wikipedia

 

This town is the gateway to Kenai Fjords National Park. Situated on Resurrection Bay in the Gulf of Alaska, it offers many ways to explore the Harding Icefield and its nearly 40 glaciers that dominate this area.

 

We took a half-day boat trip out of Seward and had the thrill of seeing a glacier from the boat. Occasionally a huge mass of blue glacial ice broke off (“calved”) and tumbled into the frigid waters below.

 

There are only four remaining icefields in the U.S., the Harding Icefield in Seward is one, and covers 300 square miles (777 km2).

 

Gulf of Alaska and Glacier

 

Seward Highway Vista

 

There are 190 different species of birds here, and a plethora of land and sea mammals.

 

Moose

 

In addition, the Gulf of Alaska waters are teeming with sea lions, sea otters, humpback whales, and more. We were there in the month of August, and saw thousands of wild sea mammals and migrating birds.

 

Sea Otter, Gulf of Alaska

 

There in Resurrection Bay sea lions bulk up on fish, otters gorge on shellfish, migrating birds reproduce over the summer. We witnessed dozens of bald eagles perched atop boat masts in the Seward marina, strategizing their next fresh catch.

 

Bald Eagle, Seward Marina

 

We never tired of spotting numerous humpback whales and other marine mammals and seabirds.

 

Humpback Whale Fluke

 

Common Murres

 

Common Murres nesting, Alaska

 

Steller Sea Lions, Gulf of Alaska

 

Located only 120 miles (193 km) from Anchorage, Seward can be reached by many different modes of transport. We drove the 2.5 hour trip along the Seward Highway, a National Scenic Highway. Along this highway with breathtaking vistas, we saw both moose and fishermen up to their hips in the water.

 

Kenai Peninsula, Alaska, Moose

 

 

Fishermen

 

Sea islands, Gulf of Alaska

 

As inhabitants of planet Earth, we are all so lucky to have the natural wonders of Alaska and Seward.

 

Written by Jet Eliot.

All photos by Athena Alexander, except the photo below.

How the historic Iditarod Dog Sled Race is connected to Seward. 

 

Photo by Derek and Julie Ramsey. Courtesy Wikipedia.

 

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74 thoughts on “Bountiful Nature in Seward, Alaska

  1. wouw… so beautiful and you were lucky to spot many mammal and migratiing birds. It remind me of Galapagos where we see a lot of birds and sea lion, but of course no humpback whales nor ice:) This one is in Mickey bucket list. I am still afraid about cruising there and get seasickness:)

  2. Bountiful! That’s a great word to describe the natural treasures of the PNW. Seward is on our list for a future trip, and your words and Athena’s photographs have bumped it up. Loved the marina shot, and the beautiful moose.
    Thanks, Jet, and we wish you both a wonderful weekend!

    • It is easy for me to see you and Mrs. PC in Seward, pc. There is a rugged freshness and wildness that I am pretty sure you two would enjoy. My best to you both for a wonderful weekend ahead. And, as ever, thanks so much.

    • Thanks so much, Jill. Alaska is a tricky place to visit because the cold weather and dark days are so dominant. Best time to go is June, July or August, but you have to book up early because that’s when most visitors go. I hope you get a chance to visit someday, and until then, thanks for visiting here.

    • Alaska is under fire right now in the Arctic, where oil drilling is going to break into pristine places. The way we can become better stewards is by opposing environmental catastrophes wherever it is possible. Because I am with you, Bill, we need to keep our magnificent places magnificent. Thanks so very much, always a delight.

    • Yes, Alaska is such a beautiful place. I am happy you have had the pleasure of visiting Alaska, Allan, and am glad this post revived wonderful memories of your cruise. Thank you for your connection today, my friend.

  3. Wow… what an adventure. Beautiful photo captures of the wildlife and mountains. Thank you for sharing, Jet. We visited Alaska was before the digital camera out on the market. 🙂

    • Hi Amy, I am happy you have had the delight of visiting Alaska. Though now that the digital cameras are out, you may have to revisit it. Either way, great fun. Thanks so much.

  4. What glorious captures of such wonderful memories – I so want to explore more of Alaska. Each day we get to look out our back windows to check on the snow fall on some Alaskan mountains and in-turn, Alaska occasionally shares with us some of the tsunami warnings following their quakes. Mother Nature’s reminder to NEVER take anything for granted!

    • There was always an adventure in Alaska. And what fun to bring you the Seward segment today, Sharon — thanks so much for your visit. I hope things are going better in SoCal now.

      • Hi Jet, thanks for asking, yes all is calmer. Lots of recovery going on. We had rains but no damage from flooding. The local community is reaching out to the folks who need the most help. I have a beautiful day today. We are going to set up a Christmas tree!

      • I am happy to hear this, Sharon. I know it will take years for things to settle out again, but no damage from flooding is a good start; and rain is great for clearing the air and getting the regrowth started. My warmest wishes for happy days ahead, dear Sharon.

  5. Oh! Oh! Ive been to this one, and taken the boat tour. My brother and I saw all kinds of stuff, land, sea, and air. The orca bull that swam beside us was the most impressive thing I’ve ever seen. Bunch of cows and calves swimming along… ooo, ahhh. When he showed up it looked the size of a nuclear sub compared to them, and you could tell real muscle was underneath the whale coverings.

    • What a joy to read the excitement in your comment, Craig. You sure know how to write. How very wonderful to see an orca bull. When they swim so close to the boat it takes your breath away. And sometimes you can hear their breath. So much happening on that Gulf of Alaska. I am delighted you have great memories of this sparkling paradise. Lovely comment, my friend.

  6. Lovely post. Very interesting to learn more about the Iditirod race, too, and the Serum Run! Beautiful photos of a beautiful place! Thank you.

    • I’m glad you enjoyed the Seward post today, Dave, thank you. I remember you and Sue visited Alaska once. Knowing you two intrepid adventurers, you probably biked across the surface of the Gulf of Alaska. 😉 Many thanks for your visit, and my best to you both.

      • Haven’t gone as far as across the surface of the Gulf of Alaska…. great idea! I’ll ask Sue 😊

    • Yes, it was great fun seeing all of that wildlife. Other parts of Alaska had caribou and mountain sheep and bear…just a lovely wilderness place there. Thanks so much, Bertie, always a smiling pleasure.

    • Thank you Mike. We were speeding down the highway when we saw the moose off the road, turned around, and got an eyeful. The whale was photographed from the boat, which is always tricky, as you know. Always a pleasure to “see” you.

  7. The sheer scale of this landscape is hard to for me to imagine. The wild beauty of Alaska is legendary, so glad it is one of our states.
    You two have been so many awesome places! Thanks for sharing your adventures. 🙂

    • The scale of the landscape is nearly impossible to convey, but I am glad you were able to get a good idea of the magnificence, Eliza. Not much in the way of gardening in Alaska, with so many cold months, but beauty does abound.

  8. That Sea Otter had the right attitude! 🙂
    We took a cruise to Alaska ten years ago, but we didn’t see as many animals and birds as you did. Maybe we were too early or too late in the season.

    • We were pretty lucky, Hien, to have spotted so much. But on that boat for instance, it was really really cold and we were the only people out on deck. So there’s quite a bit of hard-core determination going on there, too. You know how that is, because you don’t get those fantastic bird photos on the east coast in winter without being hard-core yourself. Cheers, my friend.

  9. I forgot the Iditarod started out in Seward. Alaska is one place I’ve had a hankering for, but somehow never got it together to get up there. Then again, we share some of the wildlife, having colonies of Common Murres on some offshore cliffs. Moose, not so much. And, of course, even the glaciers at Mount Rainier don’t hold a candle to AK’s. Athena did a fantastic job capturing the abundant wildlife to fill add to your narrative. Don’t know if I’ll ever reach Alaska (though I am closer than you are! 😀 ), but your post certainly makes the effort more tempting!

    • I think you have a great handle on the Pacific NW, Gunta, and both are magnificent. How wonderful to have colonies of common murres on offshore cliffs, and Mt. Rainier nearby. Thanks so much for visiting Alaska with me here, always a true pleasure.

  10. What a fantastic place! I love the way the sea otter seems to relax on its back while eating. And the photo of the bald eagle against the backdrop of the mountains is one I love, along with the first one of the Murres against the rocks. As an artist, I think I like that one of the Murres the most – the line of birds like an intricate phrase from a poem written across the contrasting colours and strengths of the solid backdrop. And then there is the shot of the glacier with the strange blue tongue of ice, solid, red flowing between the mountain’s cheeks – its monumental! Thanks agin Jet and Athena for a wonderful post 🙂

    • I’m smiling, Alastair, because I LOVE that photo of the common murres all in a row. I like the symmetry and the size perspective, and I think a tidy line of birds as exquisite as the common murre, all in a row, is just so cool. I so enjoyed your comment, and delighted you enjoyed the visit to Seward. Always a pleasure, my friend, thank you.

  11. Your lovely pictures remind me of the fjords and scenery of Norway. Now I’ve added Kenai Fjords National Park to my bucket list. Seeing all that wildlife and watching a glacier calve ~ the half-day boat trip sounds thrilling!

    • Yes, Barbara, the boat trip was thrilling. These were the only fjords I have been to, but I can imagine Norway must be absolutely astounding. My warm thanks for your visit and comment.

  12. Happy to see there are still some Earthly treasures left unharmed by humankind.
    Witnessing wildlife romp and feed spins the heart and stirs the imagination.
    Thanks for presenting a look at our 49th state. Wonderful photos Jet!

    • Dear Eddie, great fun to share our beautiful 49th state with you. And I enjoyed your words, and agree entirely…witnessing wildlife romp does spin the heart and stir the imagination. A big smile of thanks to you, my friend.

  13. Great pics….sounds incredible and the thought of driving the highway through that type of scenery really appeals to me. Bucket list for sure!! Great post as always Jet and my compliments to Athena for the pics!!

    • It’s easy for me to picture you and your wife travelling the beautiful Seward Highway, Kirt, and capturing images and making them into colorful artwork. Thanks so much for your kind words and visit today…always appreciated.

    • I sincerely hope that icefield will never go away, too, montucky. We do what we can, and we admire what we have while we still have it, yes? Thanks so much for stopping by and commenting, I always enjoy your visits here.

  14. thank you for this colorful
    Alaskan holiday, Jet!
    I was there in 1999.
    your adventure
    so filled with wildlife!
    i do remember so
    many eagles
    & flying up
    then landing on
    the glacier 🙂

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