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Alaska Magazine

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Two hundred years ago, ice covered most of Kenai Fjords National Park. Today, lush temperate rainforests emerge and along with them a habitat rife with black and brown bears, wolverines, moose, mountain goats, marmots, beavers, and snowshoe hares. Of course, the fjords remain rich with bird and marine life: tufted and horned puffins, oystercatchers, bald eagles, orcas, humpback and gray whales, porpoises, sea otters, and Steller sea lions. Tours heading through Kenai Fjords deliver those sightings and more, including calving glaciers cracking with white thunder, a lasting reminder that the only thing constant in this national park is change. Kenai Fjords was designated a national park in 1980 under the Alaska National Interest Lands Conservation Act. The park encompasses 669,983 acres and provides habitat for several threatened or endangered species including humpback, sei, and gray whales, as well as Steller sea lions. Steller sea lion populations are monitored from the Alaska…