Our goal in supporting this program is to promote JIRP’s awareness and encourage the data collection of the glacial landscape that is our backyard.
This educational and research program has 60 years of experience maintaining the longest running study of any glacier in the Western Hemisphere.
Priceless scientific knowledge is gathered and shared about the 1,500 square mile Juneau Icefield. Students from the United States and internationally pursue groundbreaking research alongside scientists in the largest classroom in the world.
Help us celebrate and support the accomplishments of this incredible organization.
Amazing Juneau Icefield Facts
- Stretches 90 miles from Juneau to Skagway
- Extends 1,500 square miles (3,900 square kilometres)
- Bigger than the state of Rhode Island
- One of the world’s largest non-polar masses of snow and ice
- Home to over 40 large valley glaciers and 100 smaller ones
- Maximum glaciation point was around 1700 and has retreated ever since
- Beginning in 1948, JIRP has been monitoring the glaciers
- Notable peaks on the Icefield are Devils Paw and the Mendenhall Towers
- Taku glacier is known as the thickest alpine temperate glacier in the world, measuring at almost 5,000 feet thick, 30 miles long and five miles across
- 400 years ago, Taku Glacier flowed across the river creating an ice dam and a large lake
- The glaciers we see are the remnants of the Little Age that occurred about 3,000 years ago
- The vibrant azule blue colors are from a unique crystalline structure that absorbs and reflects light. These are most intense in crevasses and when ice breaks off, or calves, from a glacier’s face. The blue color fades as the ice is exposed to air and the crystalline structure breaks down.
- Grey days are the best glacier blue days, so don’t let the overcast days change your plans or your mood, for that matter 😉