With increasing levels of harmful gasses and global warming not coming under control, alot of natural resources in the world are gravely being threatened for their mere existence. Glaciers are a part of those resources that will soon disappear along with its beauty and before they perish to natural disasters and climatic fumbles, we must at least value what they had to offer while they existed; their beauty. Glaciers are fearless structures surviving ice ages and technological changes, they also make us realize how tiny a place we occupy in this world. A list of glaciers perishing quickly but still remaining to be natural wonders must be visited by every nature enthusiast.
The world’s highest battlefield has its base on the Siachen glacier, the worlds highest and the toughest battleground. More than its political significance, Siachen is the most beautiful glacier you will ever have a chance to see before it succumbs to global warming or becomes an area off limits. To reach Siachen from the Indian border one must get all the necessary permits and permissions since it is a highly sensitive area. It is also the second largest belt in the world’s non Polar Regions. The glacier has reduced 35% according to Pakistan Meteorological Department.
2. Baltoro glacier (Pakistan)
This glacier is in the Baltistan region of Pakistan, Baltistan itself is a hidden gem and fairly unexplored due to its close proximity to the border as well as frequent militancy attempts around the area. Pakistan having majority of the Karakorum ranges also is home to world’s second highest mountain; K2. The Baltoro glacier can be reached through the town of Skardu. It is a famous trekking and hiking point along with the base camp of K2.
Image Credits- Concordia Expeditions
3. Antarctica Ice Sheet (Antarctica)
A huge chunk of ice that covers about 98% of the Antarctic region is called the Antarctica Ice Sheet, which is also the largest in the world. The geology of this region is fairly complicated but researchers have found out that large glacial chunks are breaking off from the main ice belt and melting into the sea due to rise in temperatures. The Antarctic ice sheet is nature’s biggest and most wonderful marvel. When one looks at the humongous layers of ice and snow on top of each other, it leaves the mind boggled for questions without answers! Take a trip up to the coldest point on earth and witness the superiority of Antarctica.
Image Credits- The Resilient Earth
4. Fedchenko (Tajikistan)
Located in the province of Tajikistan, Fedchenko is the largest glacier in the region; it also is the longest glacier in the world outside of Polar Regions. One can easily take a trek up to the glacier or hire a chopper that gives you an Ariel view of the entire glacier and even the insides of the glacier. The view is outstandingly spectacular to see.
Image Credits- Views of The Earth
5. Columbia Glacier (Alaska)
Explore the southern side of the American state of Alaska; you’ll come across one of the most beautiful glaciers in the world called the Columbia glacier. The scenery looks like a painting of grey, blacks and whites. Each and every turn of the blatantly icy glacier seems like a work of art. To reach the Columbia glacier you can take up a planned expedition starting in Alaska.
Image Credits- NASA Jon Von Atta 2008
6. Greenland Ice Sheet (Greenland)
The Greenland ice sheet looks like a massive frozen waterfall. It so big and vast, that the entire range might remind you of the Niagara Falls in Canada. The ice sheet covers almost 80% of the Greenland and it is the major water source in the region as well. This region also has experienced major receding events and dropping of ice into the vertical limits. Researchers say that the region has had a lot to sacrifice due to the increase in global temperatures and the depleting of ozone layers. To reach the Greenland ice sheet is by taking a chopper to explore the Ariel view.
Image Credits- Ian Joughin
7. Exit Glacier (Alaska)
This glacier is one of the most popular and frequently visited glaciers in Alaska. Travelers can easily go up till the last point where the road goes which gives a fairly considerate view of the massive front of the glacier. One can also trek up to the smallest portion of the glacier or hike up to the last point.
Image Credits- Bakisto
8. Austfonna (Norway)
It is an icecap located just a little off the outskirts of Norway. The glacier is a visual delight and regarded as the seventh largest in the world. The glacier is located on the third island in the region that separately forms a big chunk of the glaciers of the world. The icecaps are quickly melting and worrying a lot of scientists of global environment concerns.
Image Credits- Mike Reyfman
9. Perito Moreno Glacier (Argentina)
To reach this glacial wonder there are many travel companies that take tours. One can also arrange a private tour if not interested in going with a group. The Perito Moreno glacier is supposedly the world’s most beautiful glacier. It also is a major attraction in Argentina’s Patagonia. Unlike other glaciers that have been melting due to global warming, Perito Moreno glacier is actually growing which is very weird even for the scientists and the researchers to figure out. There are also trekking routes set for visitors and those interested can walk down to the southern face of the glacier as it spreads wide in every direction towards the lake.
Image Credits- Jacob Polomski
10. Marjerie Glacier (Alaska)
The Marjerie glacier is a declared a national monument and then later a world heritage in 1992. Unlike other glaciers that are melting, this glacier however seemed to have stayed stable over the years and has not receded. To view the glacier one can take a cruise ship that stops just outside the glacier for quite some time or hire a chopper to view the glacier from above.
Image Credits- Charter Wave
11. Yulong Glacier (China)
The Yulong glacier is located in the province of china and is inside the Yulong glacier park. One can easily take the gondola in the park and then hike up to the glacier. There are stairs along with a boundary balcony from where one gets spectacular views of the glacier. That area in particular is a paradise for photographers. The glacier is also called the ‘natural museum of glaciers’ and is soon going to be falling apart due to troubles of global warming.
Image Credits- Panoramio
All the above glaciers are in different continents, and soon melting. Since glaciers are quickly melting due to global warming we must truly rush to see the wonders while they still exist! Travelling to glaciers is never too difficult if you really have the will to. Each country treasures its glaciers and allows tourists to go there charging sometimes a nominal fee. For other glaciers, there are ferries, cruises, choppers that provide for a perfect way to see the glacial wonders from far off. If possible, the best way to experience the glaciers is trek to it or around it.