Portage Glacier

The Portage Glacier is situated on the Kenai Peninsula, in Alaska and within the Chugach National Forest. In terms of its location it is just south of the Portage Lake and 6km west ward of Whittier.

Visitors could choose between driving down to the Portage Valley to see the Glacier or continue onto Whittier to see the amazing marine life at Prince William Sound.

The Chugach Eskimos are famed to have hunted in this area for thousands of years. Russian fur traders also used Portage Valley as a means of traveling between Prince William Sound and Cook Inlet.

The Portage Lake was formed behind the Portage Glacier since it began receding. A hanging glacier called the Burns Glacier can be viewed from a distance and is set in the middle. So where is the Portage Glacier? It is behind the extension of the glacier to the right of the Burns Glacier.

It’s difficult to see the glacier but it’s much easier to see where it used to be. Sadly during the past couple of years the glacier has begun withdrawing from the lake. All that remains today is a small piece in the centre of the lake, while the major portion of the glacier face goes down more than 100 feet into the lake.
But the Portage Glacier is still considered as a valley glacier and one of the most beautiful; even to date the amount of people it attracts has still not dropped in numbers. There are many “hanging glaciers,” or glaciers that are seen partly down a mountainside.

In order to see the glacier, one would have to drive a bit further along the lake to a sightseeing boat dock and buy a ticket for a cruise through the lake that takes visitors close to the glacier face. Be prepared to embark on a ride that can bump you through patches of icebergs.

A stay at an Anchorage Hotel would be the ideal end to a day at the Portage Glacier. There are many Alaskan hotels to choose from and a popular hotel is the Millennium Alaskan Hotel Anchorage, due to its position along the shores of the beautiful Lake Spenard. Here visitors can enjoy views of the lake from the hotel during there stay.