• Glacier in Kenai Fjords National Park

    Kenai Fjords

    National Park Alaska

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  • Road to Exit Glacier Closed for the Winter

    The Herman Leirer Road (also known as the road to Exit Glacier) is closed to all vehicle traffic for the 2014-2015 winter season. Please see "Current Conditions" for the latest updates. More »

Learning about kids, nature, and kids in nature

About This Blog

A Student Conservation Association intern's path toward effective environmental education.

Lessons Learned

September 25, 2013 Posted by: Max Odland

The last two weeks have been a whirlwind of activity, with hardly a moment to spare between giving school programs and getting ready for the next new program. Today is the first time I've felt I can take a breath and write in a while because I finally gave my last new lesson at Exit Glacier (yesterday, about the water cycle). I still have two more programs to give, but I've led them before, so I don't need to frantically pack them into my brain—they're in there somewhere already. The fact that I only have four more days of work at Kenai Fjords hasn't really begun to sink in.

 

Two Ways to Find Home

September 11, 2013 Posted by: Max Odland

A school bus pulls up outside the Exit Glacier Nature Center to unload its passengers. A stream of 6th graders pours out its door under a blanket of gray clouds. Clouds that threaten rain, but won't make good… not this day, at least. The students gather under a pavilion briefly to hear their mission and split into groups of five. Then they're off on the trails, park rangers and chaperones trailing behind as they hurry down the trails on a hunt to find different native plants using a GPS and a sheet of clues.

 

Get Set

August 21, 2013 Posted by: Max Odland

Fall is here. Nighttime is an increasingly convincing presence in the wee hours of the morning, schools are starting up, and the Education staff at Kenai Fjords is kicking into high gear.

 

Mostly on the (Outwash) Plain

August 10, 2013 Posted by: Max Odland

It had to happen. I didn't know when, exactly, but there was no avoiding it. Too many Sewardites warned me, 'this isn't the real Alaska.' I knew it couldn't last, but hope lingered quietly in the back of my mind. That hope finally lost its stare-down with reality. The rain is back.

 

Change of Pace

July 18, 2013 Posted by: Max Odland

Summer is well under way here in Seward. Temperatures regularly soar into the high 60s, the sun breaks through the clouds (most days) by the afternoon, and hikers and sight see-ers are showing up in droves at Exit Glacier...

 

Success(ion)

July 08, 2013 Posted by: Max Odland

It's nearly impossible to miss how much the landscape changes over the course of the short walk from the Nature Center at Exit Glacier to the glacier itself. You might notice it in fits and starts, when the trees suddenly get small enough peer between with ease, or when you emerge onto the hillside and see them replaced by occasional shrubs poking out of a patchy moss carpet.

 

Getting Warmed Up

June 24, 2013 Posted by: Max Odland

A large part of my job this summer will be to lead interpretive programs for visitors at Exit Glacier. Interpretation is all about giving people a better opportunity to connect with the nature, history, or culture of a particular place, and there is plenty of exciting nature at Exit glacier to connect with. There is, however, one bit of nature at Exit Glacier that I'm not so enthusiastic about—climate change.

 

Find Your Fungus

June 13, 2013 Posted by: Max Odland

After a week of interpretive training plus another two weeks of prep work and shadowing the more experienced rangers, I'm excited to be leading my own programs. Though similar to the school lessons I've done with the education department, there are a few things about interpretation that take a little getting used to.

 

Diving In

May 09, 2013 Posted by: Max Odland

Last week marked a big departure from my first two weeks at Kenai Fjords; I started actually leading lessons. Thus far, I’ve mainly been learning the ropes around the office, occasionally shadowing the education rangers while they give programs, or helping with park-related arts projects in Seward Elementary School for National Park Week while the road into the park itself is impassible under three feet of snow...

 

One Fjord to Another

May 03, 2013 Posted by: Max Odland

I've been in Seward, Alaska for almost three weeks, and the cold, persistent drizzel is finally making me believe everyone who told me not to get used to the constant sunshine of earlier weeks. This is a temperate rainforest, after all...

 

Did You Know?

Dall's Porpoise

The Dall’s porpoise may be the fastest small cetacean on the planet. It has been reported to reach speeds of 30 knots. These creatures delight in riding the bow waves of tour boats in Kenai Fjords.