Why Exit Glacier is a Must See this Summer
Towering snowcapped mountains, trying to hold on to glaciers that spill out to the sea, creating stunning views. This is Seward, Alaska. There are a multitude of things to do and see in this picturesque town, but one that can’t be missed is a visit to Exit Glacier in Kenai Fjords National Park.
While you are here visiting Exit Glacier and other Seward attractions, take the guess work out of where to stay and stay with us! Seward Hospitality Group owns and operates 3 comfortable downtown Seward hotels, 6 restaurants in the area, as well as an RV park just outside of town. After seeing Exit Glacier you’ll want to do and see more of this gem of a city! A 3 or 4 night stay will allow the magic of Seward soak in. Book your Alaskan adventure today!
6 Reasons Exit Glacier is worth a visit this Summer
For most people, seeing a glacier is a once in a lifetime opportunity. Exit Glacier offers the chance to experience this leftover from the Pleistocene up close and personal. This monumental landform is one of many glaciers that pour off the Harding Icefield, but is by far, the most accessible to see. Getting its name back in 1968 as the “exit” of the first recorded crossing of the icefield, Exit Glacier stands as more of an entrance or window into what once was. There are unlimited reasons to visit this unique spot, but we’ve narrowed it down to our 6 favorite.
- A stop at the Exit Glacier Nature Center is worth a visit. Located at the end of the Exit Glacier road, this facility is a great place to start as it provides information and exhibits about not only Exit Glacier, but the surrounding Seward area as well. A purchase at the Alaska Geographic Bookstore helps support the parks interpretive programs and education about the park.
- Exit Glacier is the only part of Kenai Fjords National Park that is accessible by vehicle. Considered a “drive-up” glacier, it doesn’t take much effort to get a huge bang for your buck. You can easily drive your own vehicle, a rental car, or take the shuttle that leaves from Seward every hour from downtown. It’s a 15 minute trip along the spectacular Resurrection River and through Kenai Fjords National Park.
- There is a hike for everyone at Exit Glacier. From paved shorter loop trails to whole day adventures, you won’t be disappointed as any hike in this spot will drop your jaw on the floor. Hikes like the Glacier View loop trail, the Glacier Overlook trail, and the Edge of the Glacier trail will all give you a huge reward of stunning views for relatively little effort.
- If you are willing to put forth a bit more effort and go on more of an adventurous hike, The Harding Icefield Trail is the one for you! This is an 8.4 mile round trip, all day hike where you ascend up past the Exit Glacier onto the Harding Icefield. The large expanse of this majestic landscape stretches as far as the eye can see. From up here one gets a taste of what the last ice age must have been like. A window into Alaska’s past. This is considered a strenuous hike so be sure to wear sturdy shoes, have a walking stick or trekking poles, and extra layers for the icefield. The Harding Icefield Trail is an amazing chance to see how a glacier shapes the landscape.
- You can see evidence of Alaska’s past, but you’ll have the opportunity to be witness to a possible future for glaciers as well. Exit Glacier is a visible and tangible reminder that glacial recession is happening. This glacier is a representative for the effects of global warming. It is a stark wake up call for visitors who experience this place first hand, which makes Exit Glacier an important component in the story of how we go about slowing these effects.
- Taking a guided hike will immerse you even more in this magical spot with a knowledgable guide to answer any and all questions you may have been wondering about the area. There are interpretive walks led by rangers from Kenai Fjords National Park, or let us take you on the ultimate tour! At Seward Hospitality Group we offer Seward excursions in order to get to know this special place on a deeper level. On our Appetite for Adventure Tour we will explore the beauty of Exit Glacier as well as learning how to gold pan and have a visit with some reindeer. Sure to be memories that will last a lifetime!
The Best Hotels to Stay at while visiting Exit Glacier in Seward
While exploring the Exit Glacier and surrounding area you’ll quickly realize that just 1 or 2 nights in this awe-inspiring wilderness is definitely not enough! From multiple hikes in the Exit Glacier area to exploring the surrounding Kenai Fjords National Park and all that the town of Seward has to offer, a 3, 4, or even 5 night stay would be more sufficient to experience it all!
Seward Hospitality Group owns and operates 3 conveniently located downtown hotels with your comfort in mind. We also operate 6 restaurants in the area so can help you find the perfect meal to top off your Alaskan adventure. If you happen to be stopping though town in your RV, we own a quiet RV park just outside of town so you can really get away from it all. Book your once in a lifetime vacation to the incredible town of Seward today!