Mendenhall Glacier Interpretive Visitor Center


The center was built in 1962, the first visitor center in the National Forest System. The original structure was primarily a large observatory where people could get out of the rain and look at the Mendenhall Glacier. It was designed to accommodate 23,000 people a year. Over the years a few exhibits were added. Thirty-five years after it first opened, the center was hosting over 400,000 people a year. Between 1997 and 1999 the building was renovated and enlarged to include an exhibit gallery and theater.

At a Glance

Operational Hours: Winter Hours of Operation: October - April, 10 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. Thursday through Sunday Closed on Federal Holidays Summer Hours of Operation: May - September 8 a.m. - 7:30 p.m. Sunday through Saturday Open on Federal Holidays
Fees From May through September, admission costs $5 to go into the visitor center to view the exhibits and see audio visual presentations.
Open Season: 01/01
Usage: Heavy
Closest Towns: Juneau, AK
Water: Potable Water
Restroom: Flush Toilet (2)
Operated By: Forest Service

General Information

Directions: From downtown: 12 miles. Take Egan Drive and turn right at Mendenhall Loop Road. Mendenhall Loop Road turns into Glacier Spur Road and ends at the visitor center. From the Juneau International Airport: 5 miles. Exiting the airport, turn left on Yandukin Drive. Turn right on Shell-Simmons Drive. Turn left onto Glacier Highway. After a quarter mile, the road will curve right and become Mendenhall Loop Road. Follow this road across Egan Drive. Mendenhall Loop Road eventually turns into Glacier Spur Road and ends at the Visitor Center. From the Alaska State Ferry Terminal: 7 miles. Turn right onto Glacier Highway. After a mile and a half, the road splits at Auke Bay. Turn left onto Mendenhall Loop Road. After four miles, it will intersect Glacier Spur Road. Turn left onto Glacier Spur Road, which ends at the Visitor Center.

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