Root Glacier Hike – Best Glacier Hiking in Alaska!
Your adventure begins at our office in the historic mill town of Kennecott, Alaska. Here you will meet your professional mountain guide who will fit you for crampons (steel spikes worn on your shoes to make hiking on the glacier ice a breeze) and make sure that you have all the essentials for a day of fun and discovery.
The trail gradually descends toward the edge of the Root Glacier and as your guide pauses to explain the local geology, flora, and fauna, you’ll enjoy spectacular views of the rock-covered Kennicott Glacier and 6,696’ Donoho Peak. Continuing on down the lateral moraine, the air becomes slightly cooler and the vegetation changes as you near the edge of the ice and the freshly exposed moraine found there. 2 miles one-way, the trail to the glacier is moderate with some steep sections, so be sure to bring good hiking boots, and a pack to carry your gear. You and your guide pause at the edge of the ice to don crampons and learn some cramponing techniques and glacier safety.
Day hiking on the Root Glacier has been likened to a walk in the tide pools near the ocean and you can literally spend hours discovering the fascinating details on its surface. Water runs all over the ice surface, joining into bubbling streams and waterfalls. In steeper terrain, the water picks up speed, and carves deep canyon-like ravines in the ice, forming beautiful and enticing water slides. At level spots, the water collects and reflects a breathtaking blue. Another 50 degrees warmer and you might think about a quick swim! As the ice gives way to the melting water, holes, known as moulins, form. Although many of these holes are huge black caverns, with a roaring waterfall dumping straight down hundreds of feet into the very heart of the glacier, some no bigger around than your arm and make a sound like a gurgling coffee pot.