The Great Glacier

A sense of scale – a hiker gets up close and personal with the ever-receding Illecillewaet glacier

Hiking over the polished and plucked bedrock (that was under ice only a century ago) for another hour-and-a-half beyond the official end of the trail, we arrived at a knoll overlooking the glacier. As we were enjoying a well-earned lunch, we caught sight of a couple of hikers who’d ventured further, inadvertently providing us with a convenient measure of the scale of the ice. Without them, it would have been difficult to convey just how massive the glacier is, even though it’s receding at a steady rate.

Of course, we couldn’t resist a closer look ourselves and soon realized just how deceptive the scale was – it took at least 20 minutes to get to the edge of the glacier! So much for a quick look…