Thirty-four years ago Glacier Bay was designated as a national monument to be preserved as a scenic and recreational area in what was then a remote territory.
Today, under statehood, this monument takes on a greater significance since attention has been focused on the 49th state. People will want to see its great natural wonders and the glaciers are the finest examples of the relentless action of nature. More than 20 tremendous glaciers illustrate all stages from actively moving ice masses to those that are nearly stagnant and slowly dying. A sheer face rises 265 feet at Muir Glacier and is nearly two miles wide.
Scientists consider the bay a great outdoor laboratory where changes in climate during the past centuries brought about advances and retreats of the glaciers, and are sensitive indicators of great importance to long range climatic studies. The Lituya Bay cataclysm of last summer still requires interpretation, but it is one of the many natural phenomena that have brought about changes in the face of the monument.
The National Park Service facilities at Bartlett Cove include a pier and docks as well as residences for a permanent staff. Regular flights are made to the Cove and a number of commercial boats carry visitors to the inner bay. A visit to Glacier Bay is essential if you want to say you saw Alaska