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Posts tagged Gulf of Alaska

Mount Drum and Bering Glacier in Wrangell Mountains, Alaska, USA

62.1N 144.6W

July 10th, 2011 Category: Mountains, Volcanoes

USA - June 20th, 2011

This wide-swath ASAR image shows mountains and glaciers in southern Alaska, USA. Visible near the left edge in the upper left quadrant is Mount Drum, a stratovolcano in the extreme western end of the Wrangell Mountains.

Due south of Mount Drum, offshore, is Kayak Island in the Gulf of Alaska, by the Alaska Malaspina Coastal Plain. It has a land area of 73.695 km² (28.454 sq mi) and no population.

Moving eastward along the coast from the island, one comes to the Bering Glacier, which currently terminates in Vitus Lake south of Alaska’s Wrangell-St. Elias National Park, about 10 km (6 mi) from the Gulf of Alaska. Combined with the Bagley Icefield, where the snow that feeds the glacier accumulates, the Bering is the largest glacier in North America.

The Cook Inlet and Nearby Features, Alaska, USA

59.5N 155.1W

October 20th, 2009 Category: Lakes

Alaska, USA - August 11th, 2009

Alaska, USA - August 11th, 2009

The junction of two mountain ranges, the Alaska Range from the North and the Aleutian Range from the South, can be noted near the center of this image of Alaska, USA. Near this juncture is Lake Iliamna, dark blue, the state’s largest lake.

East of the lake and mountains is Cook Inlet, which stretches 180 mi from the Gulf of Alaska (below) to Anchorage (above) in south-central Alaska. Here, greyish-tan sediments flow from the upper reaches of the inlet down towards the gulf.

West of the Alaska Range and Lake Iliamna, on the other hand, is a flatter area of terrain. Here, the Kuskokwim River can be seen flowing southwest towards the Bering Sea. The river, which is approximately 724 miles (1,165 km) long, is also the longest river entirely contained within one state of the USA.

Cloud Vortex Off Alaska-Canada Coast

56.9N 141.3W

October 3rd, 2009 Category: Clouds

Cloud vortex off coast of Alaska and Canada - September 23rd, 2009

Cloud vortex off coast of Alaska and Canada - September 23rd, 2009

A large cloud vortex swirls off the coasts of Alaska, USA, and Canada, near the Yukon and British Columbia Provinces. Most of the Canadian terrain is hidden beneath the clouds associated with the vortex.

However, some Alaskan land can be seen, including the snow-capped peaks of the Wrangell, Chugach and Saint Elias Mountains. The mouth of the Copper River can be spotted along the coast, spilling tan sediments into the Gulf of Alaska.

The Copper Rivering Entering the Gulf of Alaska

60.3N 144.9W

September 27th, 2009 Category: Rivers

Alaska, USA - September 3rd, 2009

Alaska, USA - September 3rd, 2009

The Copper River or Ahtna River is a 300-mile (480 km) river in south-central Alaska in the United States that is seen here spilling tan sediments into the Gulf of Alaska. It drains a large region of the Wrangell Mountains and Chugach Mountains into the gulf.

It is known for its extensive delta ecosystem, as well as for its prolific runs of wild salmon, which are among the most highly prized stocks in the world. It is the tenth largest river in the United States, as ranked by average discharge volume at its mouth.

The Copper River rises out of the Copper Glacier, which lies on the northeast side of Mount Wrangell, in the Wrangell Mountains, within Wrangell-Saint Elias National Park.

It begins by flowing almost due north in a valley that lies on the east side of Mount Sanford, and then turns west, forming the northwest edge of the Wrangell Mountains and separating them from the Mentasta Mountains to the northeast. It continues to turn southeast, through a wide marshy plain to Chitina, where it is joined from the southeast by the Chitina River.

The Copper River drops an average of about 12 feet per mile (2.3 m/km), and drains a total of 24,000 square miles (62,000 km2). The river has 13 major tributaries and runs at an average of 7 miles per hour (11 km/h). It is a mile (1.6 km) wide at the Copper River Delta, near Cordova. Approximately 50 miles (80 km) southeast of Cordova, it enter the Gulf of Alaska.

Bristol Bay and the Cook Inlet, Alaska

58.7N 156.7W

June 15th, 2009 Category: Lakes, Rivers

Alaska, USA - June 7th, 2009

Alaska, USA - June 7th, 2009

The Cook Inlet, far right, stretches 290 km (180 mi) from the Gulf of Alaska to Anchorage in south-central Alaska. Its watershed covers about 100,000 km² of southern Alaska.

The inlet is bordered on the east by the Aleutian Range, whose peaks are still snow-capped, and to the north by the Alaska River.

Several lakes are located in and near these mountains; the most visible are Becharof Lake (below) and Lake Iliamna (above). The former is located in the Aleutian Range; the latter at the northern end of the Alaskan Peninsula.

Lake Iliamna is the largest lake in Alaska. Through the Kvichak River, its waters drain into Bristol Bay, bottom center.

Bristol Bay is the eastern-most arm of the Bering Sea, about 400 km (250 mi) long and 290 km (180 mi) wide at its mouth.

The upper reaches of Bristol Bay experience some of the highest tides in the world. One such reach, the Nushagak Bay near Dillingham and another near Naknek in Kvichak Bay have tidal extremes in excess of 30 feet (9.9 m), ranking them as eighth highest in the world.

This, coupled with the extreme number of shoals, sandbars and shallows, makes navigation troublesome, especially during the area’s frequently strong winds.

Sediments pouring into Bristol Bay give its coastal waters a yellowish tinge, while those draining into the Cook Inlet are darker brown. The two lakes mentioned, on the other hand, appear dark blue and free of silt.