I didn't think I could come up with a better way to open this entry than with a picture, but that isn't even the coolest one. This morning, I hiked out to Mendenhall Glacier with some folks. That's the view from the glacial lake (on the right), over to the end of the glacier (that light gray river on the left).
But before we even got in cars to drive to the trailhead, as we were all standing out front of the dorm, I saw my first Chestnut-backed Chickadees frolicking on the roof and in the air between the dorm and the trees. Then I saw my first Merlin come flying over the walkway and pluck one out of the air. (Ed. note: the play has been reviewed and the bird in question was a Sharp-shinned Hawk. The presence of distinctive bands on the tail, which are not consistent with the Pacific northwest plumage of the Merlin, as well as the wing shape, especially in the final approach to the prey, were more typical of the Sharp-shinned).
The glacier is to the left and way up the lake.
At some point in this, I also ate a piece off the glacier. Glacier tastes a little like gravel, just so you know. Apparently the powdered rock in it isn't bad for you, but I didn't go to town, just in case.
The original post contained a panorama of my pictures that my mom had made in Photoshop. For the updated entry, though, I remade the panoramas, since the software now automates the process and does a far, far better job than we were able to.