After a safety briefing, you’ll load up and float across Spencer Lake, getting up close to icebergs and taking in panoramic views of Spencer Glacier. Happy trails! Tour Overview. BEST thing ever! Station Stops. Leave your Altras at home. No other campers joined us, so we were happy. Take the Spencer Glacier Whistle Stop Train in Alaska. The trail is wide with crushed gravel and super easy to navigate. Enjoy a float down Placer River, witnessing Spencer Glacier in all of its beauty. It's so beautiful you'd think it was fake. Have fun Hiking family! Find all the transport options for your trip from Anchorage to Spencer Glacier right here. Yes, it’s 49 switchbacks up up up, but apart from the shale rock trail sections that sometimes make it hard to discern where the trail actually is, it is very doable. Then you take a hike about a mile and a half to the glacier itself. This average hiker girl was nervous. However, we were pretty satisfied with just hiking the moraines and had a blast. the stop after Portage, and from here, we took a short guided walk to the glacier itself. The Spencer Bench Cabin is the newest public use cabin in the Chugach National Forest. The Glacier Discovery is a passenger train operated by the Alaska Railroad between the towns of Anchorage, Whittier Alaska and south on the Seward rail line as far as Grandview whistle stop; then back again. Due to a fast flowing river, one is apparently not able to (easily) access the left side of the glacier. Glacier Bay. This ice-age setting is rugged and primeval—mile-high peaks, sheer headwalls towering over gravel outwash plains, astonishing waterfalls and braided rivers. maintained. ous The cabin sits at an elevation of 1,900’ at the end of the Spencer Bench Trail, climbing away from the lake revealing breathtaking views of the Placer River valley and Spencer Glacier below. Once you reach the glacier you will be amazed. The hiking trails are wide and well maintained. Chugach Adventures’ was the original guide service at Spencer Glacier pioneering the area since 2001. Had to use rocks on top of the pegs. Mystery Pass to Longspur Falls via Berry Pass. THIS IS NOT YOUR MAMA’s TRAIL RUNNERS HIKE! First you take the train back into the wilderness to the Spencer glacier whistle stop because there are no roads. Fresh bear droppings on the trail. Do order ahead from the Wild Catch cafe for lunch. Spencer Bench Cabin sleeps 6-8 … You have just enough time to go get a meal to go during your 40 minute stop over in Whittier. Our trip to Spencer Glacier with Amy was awesome! It is a seasonal train, only operating between the months of May and September. Spencer Glacier is a glacier in Alaska and has an elevation of 2234 feet. Spencer Glacier rises 3,500 feet in a stunning, natural ramp from a lake of royal-blue icebergs in the Chugach National Forest just 60 miles south of Anchorage. I loved the snowmobiles and I loved looking at that blue ice. If you are a resident of another country or region, please select the appropriate version of Tripadvisor for your country or region in the drop-down menu. Be careful when pouring the kerosene in, it likes to dribble all over your arm which can really harsh your mellow when lighting poopy toilet paper fires. We saw bear scat and a few piles of odd bear berry vomit. Our trip began with a short train ride from the station in Portage (which is not really a town anymore), but the Glacier Discovery train actually sets out from Anchorage. It's an extraordinary sight, and definitely worth the trip. Spencer Glacier - Grandview Spencer Glacier – Grandview Day Trip. Spencer Glacier is a () and has the latitude of 60.63333 and longitude of -148.90278. This is the version of our website addressed to speakers of English in the United States. We stuck with the ranger because she had bear spray!! Kids explore the waterline at Spencer Lake with a good view of Spencer Glacier and some of its icebergs on Saturday, June 11, 2016. I saw people biking the trail and also bringing overnight gear in using Radio Flyer pull carts. There is a 1.7 mile trail that extends from Spencer Lake to Spencer Glacier. The most easily and frequently measured glacier-fluctuation parameter is the geographic position of the terminus. I am used to trails falling in the normal intermediate, moderate, difficult classification and had never had one be listed as arduous. $20 kennel fee, $30 rail road parking lot fee. This trip to Spencer glacier is worth every penny. *I stashed the empty gun case inside of the kennel in the bushes near the SB train “depot” while I was hiking. When the Begich-Boggs Visitors Center was originally built, it was right at the foot … This ice-age setting is rugged and primeval—mile-high peaks, sheer headwalls towering over gravel outwash plains, astonishing waterfalls and braided rivers. The second campsite was sheltered, but no glacier view so we moved on. First of all, this trail is only accessible by train, and the ticket is not cheap (even starting from Portage -- a stone's throw away or more precisely a 20 minute slow train ride -- the roundtrip ticket is more than $80 as of 2019). Enjoy a float down Placer River, witnessing Spencer Glacier in all of its beauty. Once at the Spencer Bench cabin you will find a nearby stream water source and a new outhouse system that has you burning your used toilet paper in a bucket. It’s a bit of a chunk of change to do this hike. In the evening the same train offers this service in reverse, traveling from Whittier back to Anchorage. It is entirely off the road system, so we ride the scenic Alaska Railroad from Anchorage or Girdwood with breathtaking views of … Looking at the history of the railroad construction and how much the glacier has. Rome2rio is a door-to-door travel information and booking engine, helping you get to and from any location in the world. The Spencer Glacier in itself is a mild quickie hike if you have out of town guests who want a smattering of Alaska. Updated March 2020, Visit Spencer Glacier on the Whistle Stop Train was originally written in June 2017. Get up close to picturesque icebergs at Spencer Glacier lake after your scenic train ride on the AK Railroad’s Glacier Discovery Train. This trip to Spencer glacier is worth every penny. The second and third sites have 3 clusters of tent sites each (too close to each other, IMHO). More importantly, the train schedule puts a tight time constraint on how far one can hike. I personally didn't think it was worth the 1.2 mile each way effort due to dodging a ton of animal scat and overgrown bushes but my husband disagrees- he thought it was a fine trail. • Waterproof • Tear-Resistant • Topographic MapNational Geographic's Trails Illustrated map of Glacier Bay National Park and Preserve in Alaska's panhandle is perfect for hiking, camping, boating, paddling, and wildlife viewing in this scenic, rugged frontier. Modern maps, charts, satellite Rome2rio makes travelling from Anchorage to Spencer Glacier easy. The hiking trails are wide and well. Otherwise no bears. Discover the wilderness just beyond Anchorage with these unique and adventurous tours out of the Spencer Glacier Whistle Stop. I classify it as a solid upper “moderate”. The railroad says you have to bring a kennel but fails to mention there will be a $20 kennel fee AND that your precious barely 1 year old puppy will be put into a cavernous empty loud cargo box car without heat for 4 hours each way. Although a few glaciers are advancing, many are in re-treat, especially those situated at lower elevations. Their clam chowder is marvelous. Spencer Glacier rises 3,500 feet in a stunning, natural ramp from a lake of royal-blue icebergs in the Chugach National Forest just 60 miles south of Anchorage. Disembark at the Spencer Glacier Whistlestop, and gear up for an exploration of the iceberg-choked Spencer Lake and points beyond. We followed the waterline and climbed up and hiked on the high dirt moraines (no trail, just using the least path of resistance) to the lake directly across from the Glacier. I wish I had thought of this.) Until next time!! The cabin uses kerosene, the first setting does a great job taking the edge off without cooking you out. A smidge traumatizing! No technical shenanigans and a hecka gradual but never ending ascent. Also, be prepared for a hiking trip that costs about the same as a 1 way ticket to Hawaii. The first "dispersed" sites have enough sites for easily 5+ tents. Online resources: I had 10 minutes of hyperextending my throat muscles when they failed to produce my Kimber upon our return to Anchorage. Spencer Glacier was our third glacier tour in two days, but it was anything but ho-hum. The Glacier Discovery train leaves Anchorage each morning during the summer and heads south along the Turnagain Arm stopping in Girdwood and Portage before traveling through the tunnel to Whittier. Hikers can access the area, south of … Hope this helps some of you out! It's best to call for reservations: (800)544-0552 or 265-2494 in Anchorage. more, Is this a place or activity you would suggest for, Is this a romantic place or activity that you would suggest for, Is this a place or activity you would go to on a. Spencer is spectacular, scintilating and special! Our train arrived at the Spencer stop at 2pm, and the return train was at 4:30pm. Take a tour with a Forest Service interpreter around the foot of Spencer Lake and then float among the icebergs that have calved off of the great glacier while the guide steers an Alaskan Native canoe. If you wake up early enough and grab a snickers bar and/or a line of cocaine you can do some real off trail navigational exploring to the ice caves at Railroad Peak glacier. Also note that the ending climb shown on the route profile is … If you want to bring your dog like I did there are some things you should know. Then you take a hike about a mile and a half to the glacier itself. We took the train in and camped overnight. You probably ended up here because you were looking to visit Spencer Glacier, but the tours to Spencer Glacier are, let’s face it, ludicrously expensive.There’s good news for you! Loved it, spectacular and sad that it is disappearing but we rode snowmobiles out there and it was a one of a kind experience. (Other passengers rafted around the glacial lake and then downriver, and were picked up by the train on its return trip. I would LOVE to do it again. shrunk since 1890 is what more people need to see. To travel on the railroad between Portage and Spencer Glacier is just $64. (It did finally turn up after a lengthy train shakedown). We had a ranger conduct the tour but you could go out on your own as well. Enjoy a float down Placer River, witnessing Spencer Glacier in all of its beauty. It’s also home to one of the most spectacular and visible glaciers along the Railbelt: Spencer Glacier, a massive wall of ice cascading down the mountains to Spencer Lake. McBride Glacier, the only tidewater glacier in the East Arm, is approximately 40 nautical … Even if you don’t make it back to the ice caves, just exploring past the end of the trail was like being in the opening scene of “The Sound of Music” and this time of year there were lots of low bush blueberries to snack on —yum! In hindsight, although expensive, we wished we had taken the inflatable boat to the side of the icebergs looks amazing! It is plenty of time, however, to hike to the lake and enjoy the many floating icebergs with the glacier visible in the distance. Experience beautiful scenery, blue icebergs and a majestic glacier! The area is open to overnight use by either staying at the Spencer Bench Cabin (5.4 mile hike), dispersal camping outside the Developed Recreation area, or in the group campground. We tried to hike as much as we can further around the lake toward the iceberg, but had to turn back halfway to catch the train. We hiked around and then met up with the. The Glacier Discovery utilizes part of the Anchorage - Seward route. The Spencer Bench trail is an arduous 3 mile switchback trail that climbs 1800 vertical feet and terminates at a foot bridge. Spencer Lake Iceberg & Glacier Tour. This amazing tour suitable for all ages and abilities starts with an easy hike from the Spencer Glacier Whistle Stop along the banks of the Placer River down to Spencer Lake. Find local businesses, view maps and get driving directions in Google Maps. In recent years, some glacier changes have been quite dramatic. From here, choose your own route across to tour ice bergs frozen in the lake and the ice wall of Spencer Glacier. There is a trail near the RR depot called the Glacier Discovery Trail- Basically it's an overgrown road that leads out to a shallow part of the gorge. Alaska is pure beauty at its finest. It is massive and truly gorgeous. Had a beautiful view of the glacier from the tent. Spencer Glacier is truly a wilderness, filled with the awe-inspiring power of nature. /ˈärjo͞oəs/ adjective When you have eliminated the JavaScript , whatever remains must be an empty page. We went by Alaska RR and took the trail walk with a Park Ranger (checking out tracks of animals and following our guide who had the bear spray!) View panoramic mountain & glacial landscapes on a 7-mile scenic river float down the pristine Placer River. After a short 1 mile van ride your guide will outfit you in paddling gear and give a kayaking and safety briefing. Transfer from Girdwood to the Portage train station provided. After a short but scenic train ride, arrive at Spencer Glacier Whistle Stop aboard the Alaska Railroad. The trail leads to Spencer Lake for spectacular glacier viewing. 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