During the summer months the Kenai Fjords National Park is a highlight for visitors exploring South-Central Alaska. Only one road accesses the park and so visitors take to the many boat tours that begin their trip from the Seward Boat Harbor in Seward, Alaska. All day trips include exploring Aialik Bay, home of towering Holgate Glacier and Aialik Glacier. Local tour operators offer day kayaking trips or even overnight kayaking trips for those wanting to take their time and get an up close encounter with the temperate rainforest, the abundant wildlife, or scenic vistas that surround you.
For many visitor and locals, accessing Kenai Fjords National Park in the summer is as easy as driving the 12 miles to the visitors center and enjoying day hikes along the toe of Exit Glacier. With day use picnic tables and overnight tent camping you can truly take in the beauty of the park. Local excursions, including SewardCityTours’ Deluxe Tour which visits the Kenai Fjords National Park, offer ice climbing on the Exit Glacier and helicopter tours of the park. The summer is a fun and exciting time to explore Alaska.
John Muir, the famous naturalist, wrote in his journal that you should never go to Alaska as a young man because you'll never be satisfied with any other place as long as you live. And there's a lot of truth to that. -Tom Bodett
A fjord is formed when a glacier cuts a U-shaped valley by ice segregation and abrasion of the surrounding bedrock. The work of the glacier then left an over deepened U-shaped valley that ends abruptly at a valley or trough end. Such valleys are fjords when flooded by the ocean.
But the fun does not end in the fall just because the cruise ships stop heading north and the hotels slowly empty out. Locals continue to enjoy the park even after the only road leading into the park is closed because of snow and ice. Once the road is covered by snow it turns into a two lane multi-use trail! Often groomed by the Seward Nordic Ski Club, locals will skate ski and classical ski along the road. Many will wear ice cleats or snowshoes or ride fat bikes to explore and give their dogs a run! Even local dog teams train along the trail. If you use your snowmachine (‘snow mobile’ for you lower 48ers) you can use the road to gain access to various valleys on the outskirts of the park.
Regardless of how you take advantage of the park during the winter, it is breathtaking to see the same gorgeous mountains enjoyed in the summer covered in snow and reflecting light from sunshine, moonlight, or even the Northern Lights (Aurora Borealis). The Kenai Fjords National Park is a beautiful place to visit during the summer but truly enjoyable year round!