The Mendenhall Glacier Visitor Center provides extensive information about the natural history of Juneau's most accessible glacier and the surrounding Tongass National Forest. But when it was built in the early 1960s, the center met some more basic needs. "It was a place where people could get warm, dry and go to the bathroom," said Pamela Finney, public affairs director for the U.S. Forest Service in Alaska.
Visitors and locals who join the daily guided hikes on the Trail of Time at the Mendenhall Glacier Visitor Center wouldn't place high in a race that measured miles walked per hour. But in a race for trivia learned per mile, the walkers would be right up at the top. "We take over an hour to go about one-half a mile," U.S. Forest Service interpreter Janice Miller Moss told the four visitors to Juneau who joined her on a recent Trail of Time tour. "There's no hurry."
In the 12 years Duane Callahan has lived in Juneau, he'd never seen anything more wild than a bear. But the creature he saw Saturday near the Mendenhall Glacier Visitor Center may have been equally wild, more reclusive and much more rare. "It looked like a small bear, only longer, with a long tail and short legs," said Callahan, who was driving eight cruise ship passengers in a Last Frontier Tours bus when he spotted what he believes was a wolverine crossing Glacier Spur Road.
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