Ruth Glacier wormhole is not what it appears

 

Standing alongside a Ruth Glacier wormhole only looks dangerous. Photo by Aaron Huey from Facebook and Instagram
Standing alongside a Ruth Glacier wormhole only looks dangerous. Photo by Aaron Huey from Facebook and Instagram

At first glance, a National Geographic photographer appears to be standing dangerously close to what could be a 1,000-foot-deep wormhole on Ruth Glacier in Denali National Park in Alaska.

As a matter of fact, Aaron Huey is standing close to what could be a 1,000-foot-deep wormhole on Ruth Glacier, but this one isn’t as dangerous as it might appear. Upon closer examination, you can make out the fact this wormhole is covered with blue ice and filled with ice water. Well, Huey tells us that, too.

“I was never afraid of the ones full of water,” he wrote on his Facebook page and Instagram. “They’d just be cold, but some had no water and it was easy to imagine a long slide to an icy death.”

Still, people were fooled as evidenced by their comments under the photo on Facebook.

“Man, I get the heebie jeebies just lookin’ at you standing so close to the edge! Step back, bud!”

“Are you not afraid to slip?”

“Surely you were on a rope for this shot!”

“Very scary, please move back.”

Huey followed up by commenting that he did not stand on the edge of the holes without water. He told GrindTV Outdoor that there were many of those, adding that the one above, with water, “was an especially beautiful ice hole.”

As for walking up to it, Huey wasn’t too concerned.

“The ice we were walking on was covered with texture from sand that had blown across the glacier and was not slippery,” he told GrindTV Outdoor.

Huey was on assignment for National Geographic. He was in Denali to capture a wolf story for the 2015 series celebrating the 100th anniversary of the National Parks system.

“As Aaron climbs, hikes, sleds, flies, and explores one of our nation’s most beautiful parks, he will be posting images on the @natgeo Instagram account,” NatGeo editor Ken Geiger said on how Huey was chosen for the assignment.

One of those images was the 1,000-foot wormhole on Ruth Glacier.

Here are a few others, photos Huey referred to as B roll:

Alan Davis leaps over a crevasse on lower Ruth Glacier. Huey reported that some of the icy blue gaps were hundreds of feet deep. Photo by Aaron Huey from Facebook and Instagram
Alan Davis leaps over a crevasse on lower Ruth Glacier. Huey reported that some of the icy blue gaps were hundreds of feet deep. Photo by Aaron Huey from Facebook and Instagram

 

A climber Huey traveled with trudges along on the lower half of Ruth Glacier where there are no snow bridges and they can walk freely among deep blue pools. Photo by Aaron Huey from Facebook and Instagram
A climber Huey traveled with trudges along on the lower half of Ruth Glacier where there are no snow bridges and they can walk freely among deep blue pools. Photo by Aaron Huey from Facebook and Instagram

 

Skiing by blue glacial pools on the way to base camp on Ruth Glacier. Photo by Aaron Huey from Facebook and Instagram
Skiing by blue glacial pools on the way to base camp on Ruth Glacier. Photo by Aaron Huey from Facebook and Instagram

 

A climber jumps between islands of ice in a shallow glacial pool on Ruth Glacier. Photo by Aaron Huey from Facebook and Instagram
A climber jumps between islands of ice in a shallow glacial pool on Ruth Glacier. Photo by Aaron Huey from Facebook and Instagram

 

View of Huey's skis after midnight. He said they are on snow for the most part but occasionally cross ice and even gravel. They are all roped up in case anything collapses. Photo by Aaron Huey from Facebook and Instagram
View of Huey’s skis after midnight. He said they are on snow for the most part but occasionally cross ice and even gravel. They are all roped up in case anything collapses. Photo by Aaron Huey from Facebook and Instagram

 

granite walls
Trudging along 5,000-foot thick river of ice grinding up against granite walls in Ruth Glacier. Photo by Aaron Huey from Facebook and Instagram

 

view from tent
View of Mooses Tooth from Huey’s tent on Ruth Glacier. Huey called it “by far the coolest place I’ve ever camped in my life.” Photo by Aaron Huey from Facebook and Instagram

Huey obviously enjoyed his time in Denali, writing on Facebook:

“I just came out of a place so epic and humbling that I will be thinking about it for years, if not decades…I followed a group of climbers who traveled to the Ruth to climb big walls. The weather did not cooperate for the big climbs but made for perfect photography up and down the glacier, of icefalls, granite spires, and crystal clear blue pools. We were on skis most of the five days with one day of climbing. I can’t show much more than B-roll here, but the photos I made are so good that this smile will be on my face for weeks!”

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