Depart Kennicott on a two mile trail that was originally built in the 1920s as a wagon road. Along the way stops will be made to discuss glaciology and local geology and take in the spectacular views of the rock-covered Kennicott Glacier and the surrounding mountain peaks.
Kennicott Glacier Lodge
In the first few decades of the 20th century, Kennicott enjoyed a fleeting boom time as a copper-mining town. As a guest at the Kennicott Glacier Lodge, you’re invited to look back on the town’s brief, feverish heyday before the mines were abandoned and rediscover the atmosphere of those prosperous times. The family-owned lodge, built in 1987, is a replica of one of the historic mining buildings in the town, itself a National Historic Landmark since 1986. Inside, the lodge paints a picture of Kennicott’s rise and decline through photographs and personal items belonging to the miners that decorate the walls throughout. Wrangell-St Elias National Park, the largest of the USA’s national parks, provides a mountainous backdrop strewn with glaciers and laying claim to nine of the States’ tallest summits.
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The lodge spares a lot of attention to evoking Kennicott’s historical mining past, while offering you a clean, comfortable stay. The main lodge has 25 guest rooms with either two queen or double beds and mountain views, which share a selection of bathrooms and shower rooms (each room does have a washbasin with cold water). Next to the main lodge, the newer south wing’s rooms have private bathrooms with glacier views.
Based in a National Historic Landmark within the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Wrangell-St Elias National Park, the lodge’s setting is both historic and scenic. You reach Kennicott via a 30-minute scenic bush plane ride from Chitina, flying over mountain ranges.
Food and drink
The lodge runs the only restaurant in Kennicott, offering a dinner menu of home-cooked food where diners sit around communal tables to share the three courses. The restaurant also serves a buffet breakfast and lunch.
Facilities and activities
As a basecamp for exploring Wrangell-St Elias National Park, the lodge puts you within easy reach of numerous outdoor pursuits. Root Glacier is a 2.5 km (1.5 mile) hike away, and guided glacier hikes are also available. Aside from hiking in the park, you can also opt to go mountain biking or river rafting.
The lodge is a great way to experience the small town of Kennicott’s mining history. Even though the main lodge’s rooms share bathrooms, we didn’t find it detracted from the overall experience.
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Experiences while staying here
The following activities are designed to give you the most authentic experiences of the area where you’re staying. We work with local guides, who use their knowledge and often a resident’s eye to show you the main sights and more out-of-the-way attractions. Our specialists can also suggest outdoor pursuits and activities, such as cooking classes, that will introduce you to the traditions of the area’s inhabitants.