Fuglefjorden glacier flowing into the Arctic sea. The impressive sunrise sun illuminates the tips of the mountains into a soft orange light. Beautiful clouds float in the Arctic sky, which lets the blue shine through. In the foreground, you see the reflection of the colorful sky between the pack-ice on the water surface.
Fuglefjorden glacier is in Spitsbergen, Norway. When a glacier retreats and carves a U-shape valley in the landscape, it creates a fjord. That takes many years, of course. It is resulting in the sea filling the valley floor. We describe it as a deep valley, usually narrow and steep-sided, extended below sea level, and naturally filled with seawater.
Some interesting facts about glaciers:
- To be classified as a glacier, it has to be 0.1 square kilometers. Nearly the size of 19 football fields.
- The biggest glacier in the world is 96 kilometers / 60 miles wide and 435 kilometers / 270 miles long.
- Indeed, they contain about 69% of the world’s fresh water supply.
- A glacier can move over 15 meters / 50 feet per day.
- During the last Ice Age, they covered 1/3 of the Earth’s surface.
- Unlike other colors, blue light can penetrate snow and ice, thus giving them a blue appearance.
- Occasionally they can form over active volcanoes.
Incredibly, if every glacier and ice sheet on earth melted, the sea levels would rise by over a whopping 79 meters/ 260 feet. We estimate that Alaska has over 100,000 glaciers.
Explore more like this photo of the Fuglefjorden glacier in Svalbard. Discover our Arctic circle photography.