A Bird’s Eye View of Alaska’s Coast

Seen from the air, America’s Arctic coastline dazzles the eyes while revealing signs of a changing climate.

The way in which dominant waves approach from the northwest has created this elongated spit. East of Taphook Pt., Kookoolitook Lagoon, St Lawrence Island, Alaska.

Rising sea levels and melting permafrost on this low tundra coast along the Beaufort Sea are likely to affect this pipeline. Thaw Lake, Prudhoe Bay, Alaska.

Melting permafrost and rising sea levels are inundating tundra between Smith Bay and a lake on the Piasuk River Delta. Note the two small flocks of eider chicks at lower right. Beaufort Sea, Alaska.

The Brooks Range meets the coast at Cape Lisburne. Thousands of seabirds nest on these cliffs. Cape Dyer, Lisburne Peninsula, Chukchi Sea.

A recurved spit jutting out from the shoreline into Eschscholtz Bay in Alaska’s southern Kotzebue Sound.

Linear beach ridges near Cape Krusenstern National Monument mark a system that has grown seaward over thousands of years. Kotzebue Sound.

Many coastal communities in Alaska are sensitive to storm surge and sea-level rise. This image of Kivalina shows eroding shorelines on this barrier spit.

A dramatic sea cliff on Alaska’s Beaufort Sea coast is being undercut by waves. Note the ice wedges in the cliff face where the fracture pattern intersects the shore.

The Siberian Yup'ik villages of Gambell and Savoonga on Alaska's 1,791-square-mile St. Lawrence Island have a combined population of more than 1,300.

Learn more about Alaska ShoreZone.


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