Root Glacier and Stairway Icefall Trail

MODERATE 19 reviews

Root Glacier and Stairway Icefall Trail is a 5.2 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Copper Center, Alaska that offers scenic views and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, nature trips, and birding and is best used from June until September. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

DISTANCE
5.2 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
725 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

dogs on leash

birding

hiking

nature trips

walking

views

snow

hiking
12 days ago

East hike to the Glacier. Once on the glacier watch your step if you don't have crampons or spikes

hiking
1 month ago

Fabulous hike/walk. This trail is flat and smooth, but be aware that it extends way past the AllTrails marked trail. It probably extends at least 2 more miles. The extended trail is not for those afraid of heights, as trail gets so narrow in some areas to be just about 2-3 widths of a gymnast’s balance beam. On one side there is a precipice leading straight to the glacier with a chance of survival, oh, around 1%. On the other side, mountain side, I estimate 50% chance of survival. So now you know which side you should prefer falling if that were to happen. I did this trail on a streak of dried days and very little wind. I would be very concerned doing it on very windy and/or wet days. This recommendation is just for the portion past the one shown on AllTrails. Trail eventually ends at a mountain side. At end of trail you can hike down to to a glacier lake, but there is no real trail to do that. Overall it was fantastic and easy. I did this trail early July 2018.

hiking
1 month ago

Incredible!! It was so much fun to explore the glacier, cross small streams, blue waterfalls, and a deep blue pool on the left side of Root Glacier. (The pool was located to the far left of Root Glacier, before the dirt portion, and well before the intersection of Root and Kennicott glaciers.) And the views of the surrounding mountains are amazing.

This is a great choice if you're taking Kennicott Shuttle for a 1-day trip ($109/person for a shuttle from Glennallen area). We got to McCarthy at 11, to Kennicott at 11:30, started the trail at 12, arrived at the glacier at 1, left the glacier at 3, and caught the shuttle back at 4. We had time to cross the dirt portion between 2 glaciers and walk on the further glacier for a minute before turning around.

Safety: We had hiking boots, microspikes or yak trax, and poles. We felt totally safe, didn't even come close to slipping. You could hike up the glacier in regular hiking boots, but then couldn't explore some of the steeper portions to see waterfalls etc. A guided hiking tour would be a waste of money in those conditions. it was great to explore the glacier on our own instead of following a group.

We didn't see any wildlife.

camping
2 months ago

My daughter and I hiked a couple of miles out on the trail, and then hiked on the glacier. It was Incredible! Not a ton of people out there, just enough to keep it enjoyable. Saw porcupines and hares. Never realized how loud glaciers really are. Trails were intact, solid. Bear boxes available (the second one has a broken hydraulic arm, but is useable, just a bit noisier!) We had a great time and are working on planning our trip for next year!

Sunday, October 16, 2016

Beautiful hike

http://www.trailsunblazed.com/root-glacier-trail-wrangell-st-elias-national-park/

hiking
Thursday, September 15, 2016

Friday, July 08, 2016

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Tuesday, June 07, 2016

Absolutely beautiful. Easy hike through wilderness, over a waterfall to the base of the glacier. **Make sure you bring crampons if you plan on climbing around on the glacier!!!! it is cold hard ice and I saw too many people slipping about. It's in McCarthy with the nearest town being 3 hours away.

hiking
6 days ago

hiking
16 days ago

hiking
1 month ago

hiking
1 month ago

2 months ago

hiking
10 months ago

Saturday, August 05, 2017

hiking
Wednesday, August 02, 2017

hiking
Tuesday, August 01, 2017

Friday, July 07, 2017

Tuesday, July 26, 2016