The healing pole sits upland from the Bartlett Cove Dock. It is a 20-foot yellow cedar pole depicting the conflicts between the park service and Huna tribe over their return to Glacier Bay. It combines traditional and modern forms and was co designed by Huna Elders and Park Service artists. One of the unique forms on the pole are tear shaped drops that hold different designs.
The Huna people lived in a valley that became Glacier Bay and were driven out by advancing ice. They crossed Icy Straits and formed the village of Hoonah on the other side on Chichagof Island. When the ice retreated, they tried to return but the Feds had set up a National Monument and considered the Natives as squatters and drove them off. The pole depicts the negotiations between the groups. Now there is a tribal long house at the bay, totems and house poles further up a wooded path from the healing pole. We got to go into the long house and see those poles as well. The house screen tells the story of the glacier coming down on the people.
Along the way there is a reassembled skeleton of a Humpback Whale that had been hit by a cruise ship in the bay.
After a few hours Captain Eric took the Alaskan Dream up the bay to anchor in a cove to bring us closer to the glaciers the next day.