West Glacier Trail

MODERATE 21 reviews
#2 of 26 trails in

West Glacier Trail is a 5 mile lightly trafficked out and back trail located near Juneau, Alaska that features a lake and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, and nature trips and is best used from June until October. Dogs are also able to use this trail.

5.0 miles
889 feet
Out & Back

dog friendly


nature trips






wild flowers





8 days ago

fantastic hike! great views of the glacier that are better than the visitors center imho. I prefer to take the cairn trail, which has the ice extent markers - about half way through to the ice on the trail, you'll see the an ice extent marker on your right and then another small trail that'll take you over the rocks and right down to the foot of the glacier. I recommend this route if you're trying to get to the foot and ice caves.

8 days ago

Great day hike! Beautiful up close views of the Mendenhall glacier and ice caves. Only downside is there can be a lot of hikers up there particularly on a nice day. Bring an extra layer or two as well - its colder than you think, especially if the wind picks up.

12 days ago

1 month ago

2 months ago

2 months ago

8 months ago

Explored this trail on 21 November 2016. There was a lot of ice, especially on the steeper faces but most had the cable guards to assist in climbing. We got a late start around 9:00 and headed back at 12:00 when we reached the last tall peak before the descent to the caves. It's worth a trip.

9 months ago

October 22, 2016. Hiked this with 2 workmates. We started late, 2:45pm, and with sunset at about 5:30, we kept an eye on our time. We stopped a few times for pictures, and at about the 2 mile mark, got to a great observation point. We took more pictures and decided to turn around to be sure to have daylight for some of the trickier stone steps. Delightful woods, creeks, bridges and of course the view of the Glacier and lake. We covered about 4 miles in 2 hours.

10 months ago

The hike is OK, the views also OK, but neither were what I hoped for. Frankly, the views of the glacier are far better from the visitors center on the east side, even with the crowds. We had much better scenery and more challenging hike elsewhere on our trip in AK.

11 months ago

Easy to follow trail with great views. Very neat to see the glacier from above and off to the side.

Sunday, August 07, 2016

Impressive views! It was beautiful... The last mile was a bit harder, but totally worth it! We did this hike as a family with my 11 and 13 year old and took us 5 hours to go in and out.

Tuesday, July 07, 2015

Hard not to give this trail 5 stars, but compared to the many other trails I completed while in AK I have to make a distinction somewhere. But I feel like any 4 star trail in AK would be a 5 in most other states. I followed this trail all the way out to Mendenhall Glacier itself and explored the mouths of a few of the ice caves. To do that you have to do some scrambling over the bare rock the receding glacier has left in its wake. THAT means following cairns other hikers have erected and paying attention to landmarks in the distance because it would be very easy to get disoriented. In fact on the way out, my group saw another headed over a ridge and yelled to them. We led them out to the main trail and they tipped us! So...we bought donuts.

Monday, June 29, 2015

Great hike, outstanding view of the glacier. There was a point where we had to make a decision to go left or right toward ice cave. We went to the right and the trail was much more technical and not nearly as well marked.. we had to follow trail markers in the trees. It was off the line of the indicated Alltrails trail so it was confusing. It seems like the trail has been altered since the Alltrails trail line was drawn.

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Wednesday, February 04, 2015

The hike wasn't bad, and you get a FANTASTIC view of the glacier. This was a wonderful experience while visiting Alaska. For a better view, many will kayak in the lake up to the glacier, which I'll definitely be doing if I'm back!

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Awesome view of Mendenhall glacier.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Saturday, April 27, 2013