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Matanuska-Glacier is the largest glacier in the United States that can be accessed by vehicle. It's located approximately 100 miles northeast of Anchorage, Alaska and can be seen from the Glenn Highway National Scenic Byway. Alaska Magazine chose the Matanuska Glacier as number 2 in their list of "49 Places to Go in the 49th State." The glacier is 26 miles long and four miles wide at its terminus. It originates within the Chugach Mountain Range and began its' retreat into the valley approximately 10,000 years ago. It's a solid mass of ice that flows like a river under its own weight through the valley, and has not seen any significant change in its' mass for almost two decades. Matanuska Glacier is one of Alaska's most popular tourist destinations. There are several places along the highway for viewing the glacier, safe to pull over to take advantage of the stunning views. However, it can be seen for miles before actually reaching these locations. The weather is generally clear due to the fact that Matanuska Glacier is a "weather hole", where cold air from the ice forces warm air upward towards the mountain peaks, resulting in sunny skies. Matanuska Glacier State Recreation Area is located at milepost marker 101 and provides shelter for sitting and viewing the scenery. If you wish to experience the glacier close-up, drive further to milepost marker 102 to Matanuska Glacier Park. This is a privately owned park and the only access point to the glacier. For a small entrance fee, you can drive up to and park next to the glacier, or continue on up for a hike onto the ice.

Surrounding areas: Valdez, Alaska (29.0 mi), Glacier View, Alaska (38.9 mi)

Matanuska Glacier Vacation Rentals

Matanuska Glacier Hotels and Resorts

Hotels & Motels
Alaska Flower Forget-me-not606 S WaterfallValdez, AK28.4 mi.(907) 835-2717
Aspen Hotel Valdez100 Meals AveValdez, AK28.9 mi.(800) 478-4445
Keystone Hotel401 Egan DrValdez, AK28.9 mi.(907) 835-3851
Glacier Sound Inn210 Egan DrValdez, AK29.0 mi.(907) 835-4485
Valdez Airport Mancamp324 Valdez Airport Rd PO 2148Valdez, AK29.0 mi.(907) 835-5990
Valdez Village InnValdez, AK29.0 mi.(907) 835-4445
B/W Valdez Harbor Inn100 Fidalgo DrValdez, AK29.1 mi.(907) 835-3434

Matanuska Glacier Weather & Climate

Southeaster Alaska's Kenai Peninsula is a piece of land that juts out from the southern coast of the state into the Gulf of Alaska. The peninsula has a coastal climate that is relatively mild, by Alaska's standards. The climate is heavily influenced by the Northern Pacific Ocean. The annual precipitation is very high in relation to other parts of the state, and the lack of extreme cold or hot temperatures speak of the maritime influence. The Kenai Peninsula is one of the few areas in Alaska that allows for agriculture, with a growing season long enough for producing hay and several other crops.

     Month       High Temp   Low Temp   Rainfall   Ocean Temp 
January 27°F 17°F 9.74 in. -
February 30°F 19°F 8.27 in. -
March 36°F 22°F 7.08 in. -
April 44°F 28°F 6.72 in. -
May 52°F 33°F 6.95 in. -
June 59°F 42°F 5.89 in. -
July 62°F 47°F 6.93 in. -
August 61°F 46°F 12.70 in. -
September 53°F 40°F 16.37 in. -
October 43°F 32°F 13.33 in. -
November 32°F 23°F 9.04 in. -
December 28°F 20°F 11.97 in. -

Matanuska Glacier Map & Transportation

Main viewing image.
Click each thumbnail image to enlarge.
The closest airports in the area are Valdez Pioneer Field (VDZ) located about 31 miles southeast of Matanuska Glacier in Valdez, Alaska and the Palmer Municipal airport (PAQ) located approximately 67 miles east of Matanuska Glacier in Palmer, Alaska.

Matanuska Glacier Attractions

Ski Areas
Alyeska ResortGirdwoodAK73.6 mi.
AlpenglowAnchorageAK92.9 mi.
Hilltop Ski AreaAnchorageAK92.9 mi.
Valdez Museum and Historical ArchiveValdezAK29.0 mi.(History)

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