Tons of Falling Ice...A Cool Calving

A quick story to accompany the sequence above.  We were shooting the glacier face and watching fairly small calving events.  As it neared time to go, the Captain decided we could pull a "Jericho" and blew the yacht's horns to expedite a large icefall.  As we were about 1/2 mile from the glacier, it took the sound about 3 seconds to hit the face.  By the time the echo returned to us the first small pieces of ice were already falling.

I am not exactly sure how much ice calved in this sequence but it was a lot.  For reference, the face is about 500-600 feet high.  The ice created a 100+ foot splash and a 25 foot wave that fortunately dissipated to about 15 feet when it reached the yacht.  I have to imagine it was easily hundreds of tons of ice crashing.

A still to show the size of the central spire that came down.

A still to show the size of the central spire that came down.

I am still  not completely convinced the sound energy brought down the ice but it is not outside the realm of possibility and it was one hell of a coincidence. 

For the image sequence, I shot handheld with a Canon 5D Mk II and EF 70-200mm at just under four frames a second.  I processed the images in Lightroom and then stacked them in Photoshop to align (making up for slight differences in my positioning.)  I ultimately created a series of 19 JPEGS and took them to Adobe Fireworks  to create the Shockwave Flash file.  Playback is at four frames per second so the sequence is pretty close to how the 5D Mk II captured it.

Fiat Lux!