Mendenhall, an Alaskan Ice Cave

Mendenhall, an Alaskan Ice Cave

Ghiacciaio Mendenhall,Alaska

Mendenhall, an Alaskan Ice Cave

Mendenhall is one of the most extraordinary glaciers in the world as it is home to a glacial jewel of incredible beauty. Below its surface lie hidden ice caves, and to call them fairytale-like would be an understatement. These ice caves are located at the north-western end of the American continent, in the heart of a 12-mile-long glacier located not far from the center of Juneau, the capital of Alaska.

The walls of the Mendenhall caves can be described as an enchanted and surreal place, a world of a thousand shades of blue with suggestive shapes which have been naturally carved out over the centuries by the water. The carvings are hit by light and emit beautiful turquoise reflections. Unfortunately, due to global warming, this natural wonder has become increasingly dangerous to explore. Several collapses have been recorded due to the increase in temperatures, and the melting has also led to a gradual change in shape, color and structure.

Exploration of the Mendenhall glacier should only be visited with an expert guide as it is important to use technical equipment complete with spiked shoes and ice axes. It is also important to have adequate physical preparation as this magical cave can only be reached via a kayak trip and a six-hour walk that involves climbing on an ice wall. However, the less daring can always admire this wonder from above, through a splendid flight aboard a helicopter.