It was 24 above when we left home this morning. Aki and I are dressed accordingly. Unfortunately the temperature hovers around 12 degrees F. as we slide onto Mendenhall Lake. The little dog doesn’t notice. She is too busy greeting dogs that just finished the four-kilometer lake loop.
All the beauty that surrounds Juneau spoils us. But my jaw drops each time I see the Mendenhall Glacier snaking through saw-toothed mountains on its way to the snow-covered lake. I ski toward the glacier for forty minutes while Aki runs back and forth between her other human and me. The rocky peninsula that separates the lake from the glacier appears to grow in size as we approach. From the spot where we turn back for the trailhead, only a small wedge of fractured ice appears above the rocks.
By now Aki and I are almost too warm. She chases forward to catch her other human who is flying forward on skate skis. I slip into the meditative motion of Nordic skiing.