Seward is 126.5 miles south east from Anchorage.
Day 3 was an easy day. Due to the last minute trail condition change, our original hiking plan was changed. Instead, we hiked 4.6 miles (RT) – more like a nature walk – to Lower Russian River Falls and watched salmons. I sprayed myself insane amount of bug repellent at the trailhead during Route Rap. I still got two new bites in the same forearm. What was the deal with that!
I am nearsighted. Occasionally, when a salmon jumped out of the water swimming upward, I was able to spot it but I couldn’t see the salmons that were supposed to be swimming in this pool area. People were trying to be helpful and pointed out the area for me so I pointed my camera to that direction and just started shooting hoping for the best. I finally saw them later in my room after we checked in to Seward Windsong Lodge.
By now, I developed very bad reactions to one new and one old bites – I normally get welts but these were the size of a large apple! – and my left forearm looked like a big fat sausage and started to worry some folks. Not only they were itchy, those welts were pressing down on my blood vessels so my hand felt tingly time to time from the lack of blood circulation. When a regular antihistamine didn’t work, an Australian pediatrician came to the rescue! Thanks, Suzanna!! She was travelling with prescription grade antihistamine and saved me from cutting my arm off to keep my sanity. Sorry for the violent imagery. Here is a peaceful picture of Resurrection River in the evening to make it up.
Next morning guess who came to my back patio for breakfast? I opened the curtain and was nicely surprised to find a moose family. A mom and two calves. The shy calf hid behind the bushes when I started taking photos. These two studied me for a while and when the mom realized that the silly human just wants to take her photos from the patio, she continued to munch on food. Then the little guy followed. I felt lucky to witness these lovely creatures.
At the breakfast, Suzanna gave me another pill for my nasty bug bites and suggested that I spray the bug repellent all over me before I put on my clothes and again spray after I put on clothes. Hoping for the best, I did exactly that when I returned to my room.
We had a big day ahead. After we packed our lunch and snacks, we drove to Kenai Fjords National Park to hike the Harding Icefield Trail. Initially, we had 3 hiking options today – 4/1500, 6/2270 or 8/3000 (mile/elevation gain in feet) – but due to recent avalanches, the longest option was no longer available. After Route Rap at the trailhead, off we went.
If a grizzly bear attacks you, play dead. If it starts to eat you, fight back. Seriously?! 😂
It was a glorious day. Once we gained some elevation, we had great views of Exit Glacier and the Harding Icefield. Suzanna’s suggestion worked. I didn’t get any bites. NONE. But now others were getting bitten. It was apparent that I was their first choice. With my arm starting to feel better too, I absolutely enjoyed this fabulous trail!
I was having my packed lunch at the Top of the Cliffs when someone spotted a herd of mountain goats.
This hike alone made this entire trip worthwhile. I’ve never seen anything this stunning in my life. Moved by the raw beauty, I got teared up. What an amazing planet we live in.