Best time to visit Alaska

Tana Glacier at St. Ellias National Park in Alaska 2024

Perhaps the most difficult backpacking route in all of Alaska. Though as beautiful and rewarding as it is hard!

Best time: July–early September

Tana Glacier at St. Ellias National Park
Tana Glacier at St. Ellias National Park
Tana Glacier at St. Ellias National Park
Tana Glacier at St. Ellias National Park

Accept the challenge and explore the wilderness of the Alaskan land. A trip trough Wrangell-St. Elias National Park is not a piece of cake even for experienced hikers and requires more effort than usual. That's why you should be hardy enough and prepare all the needed equipment. One of the most impressive and extreme parts of the trip is the Tana Glacier crossing. Sometimes it is not crossable at all, ​so it is a good idea to check with the local pilots first. Because of the weather conditions, the best period for the trip across Wrangell–St. Ellias National Park is time between Ju​ly and early September. ​

Practical info

When is the best time to go on a Tana Glacier crossing adventure at Wrangell-St. Elias National Park?

For those who want to cross Tana Glacier, the best time to visit Wrangell-St. Elias National Park is between July and early September. These months offer more favorable temperatures and less hazardous glacier passes. However, tourists must prepare for any uncertainties, such as weather changes, unexpected route modifications and extreme weather conditions. Show more

What are the essential factors to consider when planning a Wrangell-St. Elias National Park trip?

A Wrangell-St. Elias National Park trip necessitates careful research and preparation, including thorough and detailed map examination, itinerary preparation, and pragmatic packing for the tour. Additionally, tourists need to carry suitable equipment, foods, water, emergency supplies and inform the appropriate authorities or family members of their travel itineraries for safety purposes. Show more

Where can I rent necessary equipment for backpacking in Wrangell-St. Elias National Park?

If tourists plan on renting equipment for backpacking, they should do so before their trip. Equipment rental stores are available, such as those in McCarthy town, providing travelers with gear and clothing. In Anchorage, REI, a cooperative with stores in the United States, offers equipment rentals. Alternatively, tourists can bring their backpacking gear, which must meet park regulations. Show more

What are the challenging parts of trekking across Tana Glacier in Wrangell-St. Elias National Park?

Crossing Tana Glacier in Wrangell-St. Elias National Park requires tourists to be in top physical shape and competent mountaineers. The path encompasses steep inclines and declines, slipper patches of ice, and crevasses with fatal consequences. Additionally, erratic weather conditions can prove difficult; therefore, tourists require safety equipment, helmets and harnesses, and ropes to traverse the glacier safely. Show more

What kind of wildlife can I potentially see in Wrangell-St. Elias National Park?

Wrangell-St. Elias National Park houses a diverse range of wildlife, including caribou, wolves, Dall's sheep, brown bears, and moose. Visitors must take necessary precautions and observe the animals from a safe distance. Tourists need to abide by wildlife regulations, such as storing food properly, carrying bear spray, and avoiding making sudden movements. Before embarking on their adventure, visitors should research the park's guidelines on wildlife safety. Show more

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