Kennicott Glacier Lodge, Kennicott, Alaska
Overlooking 25 miles of glacier and surrounded by 14 mountain peaks, Kennicott Glacier Lodge has quite magnificent neighbors. Rooming with only nature, families can get to know this rarely visited portion of Alaskan wilderness. Extreme nearby adventures include glacier hiking, ice climbing, zip-lining and river rafting. Adding a historical twist to this outdoorsy vacation, families can also tour the historic ghost- town of Kennicott. Rooms are cozy, with basic amenities, and often decorated with mining artifacts and photos. Family-style dining is offered in the Main Lodge, providing an easy way to do a family breakfast, lunch or dinner. In short, Kennicott Glacier Lodge is a great place to take a break, gain strength and take on the outdoor adventure that awaits just steps from the bedroom.
Erin Kirkland (verified owner) –
Kennicott Glacier Lodge steeped in Alaska history
At the end of a 65-mile dirt road that is not for the unwary, Kennicott Glacier Lodge is a beautiful respite from the typical busy Alaska vacation. Beautifully-maintained, expertly staffed, this family-owned lodge is perfect for the family with an independent spirit of adventure. Keeping in mind that simply arriving at the lodge requires a lot of logistics (either driving the 7+ hours from Anchorage or Fairbanks, or driving to Chitina (5 hours) and flying via small plane), Kennicott Glacier Lodge is cozy, warm, and sits in the heart of Kennecott Mines National Historic Landmark. Formerly a copper mining town, Kennecott (with an ‘e’) offers great hiking, exploring, guided walks, and glacier trekking. From the lodge, it’s merely a stroll down the path to access wild Alaska. Food is fabulous, and can be included in your stay (recommended if you are comfortable with family-style dining, and a limited number of selections). The common areas are great for a board game and hot chocolate (always available). Owner Rich Kirkwood loves kids, too, and goes out of his way to make sure everyone has what they need.
Tips for Families
Plan at least three nights at the lodge; after a long, stressful drive, it’s a must. The Edgerton Highway (aka dirt road) has NO services along the way, so one must be prepared for 65 miles of indepedent travel. Take food, water, extra clothing, and a good attitude. No cell service, either. If your kids are picky, pack some healthy alternatives, like peanut butter, bread, cereal bars, etc. We brought all of the above and our son was pretty happy for the snacks. Plan on alpine-like weather; the lodge sits at the edge of a series of glaciers, and wind can be cold. Bring warm hats, gloves, rain gear, and sturdy hiking boots for everyone. A backpack for infants is a must. The lodge is only open June 1- Labor Day. We love Labor Day weekend; the leaves are turning and the views, stunning. Many Anchorage and Fairbanks families travel here for one last hurrah before winter, so reserve early. A shuttle is available to McCarthy, five miles down the road, and a little town where no “outside” autos are allowed. Try the local store for an ‘on the go’ meal, or eat at Ma Johnsons for a special treat. An epic road trip.