Visit Girdwood/Alyeska


Spend a 1/2 day in Girdwood:

Board your shuttle for the guided drive along Turnagain Arm.  From beginning to end there are dramatic views of mountain scenery and the inlet.  There’s a good chance of viewing  Dall sheep, as well as some chance of seeing some of Cook Inlet’s 350 Beluga whales and an eagle or two.
Your guide will share with you interesting facts about the history of the area- from discovery by Captain Cook, to the Gold Rush in the late 1800 to the devastating ‘64 earthquake.

Girdwood is an unincorporated year-round ski resort community within the Municipality of Anchorage in the U.S. state of Alaska. It lies in a valley in the Chugach Mountains near the end of the Turnagain Arm of Cook Inlet, 36 miles (61 km) southeast of Anchorage proper. It is surrounded by seven permanent glaciers. Summer activities include hiking, fishing and rafting, but Girdwood is best known for winter skiing and snowboarding at Alyeska Resort on Mount Alyeska.  Originally called "Glacier City," Girdwood was founded as a supply camp for placer gold miners with claims along the creeks feeding Turnagain Arm. It was renamed for Colonel James Girdwood, a Belfast-born, Scots-Irish entrepreneur and linen merchant who staked the first four gold claims along Crow Creek in 1896. The town was moved 2.5 miles (4 km) up the valley after the devastating Good Friday Earthquake of 1964, when the land under the original townsite subsided into Turnagain Arm, putting much of the town below high tide. The land has not all since been reclaimed, as one can still see 'drowned' cabins in the marshy areas where the city formerly extended. Significant earthquakes are a relatively common occurrence for Girdwood and the Kenai peninsula. Evidence has been discovered that indicates the area has seen six major quakes in the past 3300 years.[1]

Girdwood was incorporated as a city in 1970 and became part of the Municipality of Anchorage when the Greater Anchorage Area Borough unified with the city of Anchorage in 1975. The town has served as a backdrop for at least two films: The Chechahcos, a 1924 silent film about the Klondike Gold Rush, and Warren Miller's 1997 Snowriders II. Girdwood was the home of Alaska's former senior U.S. Senator Ted Stevens, and Girdwood found itself in the media spotlight when the construction projects on Stevens' home became the subject of a federal investigation. Olympic gold and silver medal-winning skier Tommy Moe also called Girdwood home durring his High School years where he attended Glacier Creek Academy.

Your driver guide will drop you off at the mini mall on the main road which is the pick up point for the local Glacier Valley Transit which cost just $1.00.   The bus runs every 15 minutes and makes several stops in scenic Girdwood/Alyeska
Cost for Shuttle Anchorage to Girdwood:  
$69.00 per person roundtrip.

Stay in touch with the shuttle driver by carrying a cell phone.  (make sure it works in Alaska).  Note: the driver can not be reached if they are deep in Portage valley road.  Don't worry simply leave a message and let him know that you are waiting at the agreed upon location.  ( There may be a 15 to 20 minute wait so feel free to enjoy the mini mall and all that it has to offer.  The driver will call you back and give you an approximate pick-up time.
Escorted van rides cost:  $99.00 per person and we need a minimum of three passengers.


Girdwood Activities

Alyeska Aerial Tram


The Alyeska Aerial Tram is a three-to-seven minute scenic ride from The Hotel Alyeska to 2,300 ft in elevation and the top of Mt. Alyeska. From the Tram, you can see miles in all directions – including views of the Turnagain Arm, up to seven “hanging” glaciers and endless peaks deep into the Chugach Mountain range. Don’t forget to look down! Moose and bear sightings are common, too.

At the Upper Tram Terminal, there is an observation deck providing even more breath-taking panoramic views of majestic mountains, hanging glaciers, sparkling streams, towering spruce, and an array of wildlife. Conde Nast Traveler rated Alyeska ~ "Best view of any U.S. ski resort." The observation deck is a perfect place to enjoy a relaxed picnic lunch or beautiful evening sunset. Telescopes are also available along the deck. From the Upper Tram Terminal, you can also enjoy exploring, berry picking, paragliding, and even hike on a glacier.

Tram Operating Schedule*
May 4 - 20, 2012: 10 am - 6 pm Friday, Saturday & Sunday only
May 25 - September 30, 2012: 9:30 am - 9:30 pm daily
October 5-14, 2012: 10 am - 6 pm Friday, Saturday & Sunday only
October 15 - November 20, 2012: Closed for annual maintenance

Scenic Foot Passenger Rates 
Adult  $20
Senior (60-69)  $17
Senior (70 & up)  $10
Military  $17
Student (13-18)  $17
Child (6-12)  $10
5 & under  Free

Tram+Lunch Combo Rates**
Adult  $30
Senior (60-69) $25
Senior (70 & up) $25
Military $25
Child (6-12) $16
5 & under $7.50

You can reach the Tram Ticket office at 907-754-2275.

* Tram schedule subject to change. To ensure ample time for you and your group to enjoy your visit, we encourage you to arrive with at least an hour prior to closing times.These are sightseeing only prices. For skiing and snowboarding see lift ticket or season pass pricing. Discounted tickets may require ID/proof of age.
** Please plan to catch the 4 pm tram ride in order to make lunch service at Glacier Express.
More info can be found at: 

Glacier Dog Sled Tours


This Alaskan adventure is hard to top! Take this exciting opportunity to learn about the dedicated dog sled teams of the Alaskan Huskies. Enjoy a spectacular helicopter ride into the majestic Chugach Mountains and onto Punch Bowl Glacier, 3200 feet above sea level. It is a giant snowfield consisting of 700ft of snow on top of 500ft of ice. Learn how the dogs are bred. Relax and enjoy the view as you ride on the sled around the glacier enjoying the scenic peaks and valleys surrounding you, see how the dogs are trained to pull the sled, and how they have this everlasting endurance, how they possess an inherent drive to run, and if you pull on the brakes it’s still hard to hold them back.

This is a trip you will NEVER forget, and most visitors say it was the highlight of their Alaskan vacation!! 
Dog Sledding with Alaskan Huskies is such a large part of Alaskan life and history, the Iditarod Trail started out as a mail and supply route from the towns of Seward and Knik to the interior, and part of the Iditarod trail was used as a life saving highway for epidemic stricken Nome, where sled dogs were used to deliver Serum in 1925 to cure Diphtheria. It is now the famous “Last Great Race on Earth” where Dogs, Sleds and their Musher’s leave from Anchorage to Nome, each with a team of 12-16 Dogs on a journey of 1150 in 10-17 days. If you have never followed this race before, after experiencing this tour, I know you will be in awe of this great race and sport!

- PLEASE make sure your camera battery is full! 
- Please dress in layers, expect temperatures on the glacier to be from 50°- 60°. 
- Wear warm comfortable clothing, sturdy shoes, and sunglasses. 
- We will provide you with a waterproof outer layer and Neos over boots
Tours depart daily May 21st - Aug 31st
Our departure Times from Girdwood:
8:30am, 10:15am, 12:00pm, 1:45pm, 3:30pm, 5:15pm
This adventure is $459 for adults and $429 for kids 12 and under.
Pick up’s available from various Girdwood locations on request.

For further information please see the following websites: