Wrangell St. Elias | South Central
The Chugach, Wrangell, and St. Elias mountain ranges converge here in Wrangell-St. Elias National Park, which includes 9 of the 16 highest peaks in the United States. This is the largest National Park in the US and is the size of six Yellowstones. The high country is covered with snow year round resulting in extensive ice fields and glaciers. The Bagley Ice Field is the largest sub polar ice field in North America. Wrangell-St. Elias and the adjoining Kluane National Park in Canada form a UNESCO World Heritage site.
Wrangell-St. Elias can be reached via two roads. The Edgerton Highway from mile 82.5 of the Richardson Highway is 33 miles long and ends at Chitna. From Chitna to Kennecott & McCarthy it is 60 miles on a rough gravel road. The Nebesna road is at mile 60 of the Tok Cut-off and travels 43 miles to Nabesna, providing access to the northern portion of the park.
You may notice two spellings of Kennicott. Kennicott, with an “i” is the spelling of the glacier, river and valley, named after naturalist Robert Kennicott. However, when the town and mine were named, a clerical error was made, and they were forever spelled Kennecott, with an “e”.
Wrangell-St. Elias Visitor Complex is at mile 106 of the Richardson Highway. It includes a bookstore, exhibit hall, theatre, scenic overlook and hiking trails. Open mid-May to mid-Sept. (907) 205-7106
Kennecott Visitor Center in Kennecott, 5 miles north of McCarthy. Backcountry trip planning info and the best place to learn about the Kennecott Mines National Historic Landmark. Open Memorial Day to Labor Day. 907-554-1105