So you want to walk on a glacier. The first order of business is to find a glacier to walk on. Turns out that a suitable speciman exists just a little more than a two-hour drive from Anchorage. The Matanuska Glacier is a 27-mile long, 4-mile wide river of ice that wends its way down out of the Chugach Mountains. And it happens to be one of the most car-accessible glaciers in the United States.
Getting There -
Take the Glenn Highway north of Anchorage. Your first choice is taking the Old Glen Highway at about milepost 29. The old road runs up along the Knik River and across to Palmer. It's a scenic drive that adds a couple miles to your trip. Otherwise stay on the Glenn Highway and exit toward Palmer and Glennallen at about milepost 35. Continue on the Glenn Highway through Palmer, Sutton and past Chickaloon. The glacier is visible across the river and valley below. Your first chance to pull over and view the glacier from afar is at the Matanuska Glacier State Recreation Site at milepost 101. Just past milepost 102 is the turn off for Glacier Park Resort, a private business that charges visitors for road access to the glacier. Continue down the steep grade and cross the river. Continue until you reach the parking area at Glacier Park Resort. After checking in and paying the fees at the resort, you can continue on across the valley until you reach the parking area near the glacier's end moraine.