When you think of fjords, you think of Norway. But America has its own fjords, along the Kenai Peninsula in Alaska.
Formed during the last ice age, the Kenai Fjords were created as glaciers moved across the land, carving thin, deep scars into the earth’s crust. From above, these narrow inlets look like fingers. The word “fjord” actually means “finger” in Norwegian.
Kenai Fjords National Park is an ever-changing landscape of rock, water, snow, and ice. Only the heartiest of creatures and people survive here—bears, right whales, and the native Alutiiq, who have made a home in this stunning and isolated part of the world for generations.
Most of Kenai Fjords National Park is protected wilderness and inaccessible to visitors. But recreational activities abound at Exit Glacier and across the Harding Icefield.
Kayak the deep blue waters, take a guided boat tour or low-altitude flyover, and hike the many trails through this pristine arctic wilderness. In the warmer months, look for mountain goats skipping up the hillside and otters skimming along the shoreline. That speck in the sky may be a bald eagle, hunting for its supper.
View a stunning satellite image of this park as seen from space on NPCA's blog, the Park Advocate.