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Exit Glacier Guides
Daily Ice Hiking and Climbing Information and policy
When, where, etc...
Our trip starts either at 9:30 or 12:30 (contact us for time) and ends at 3:00 or 6:00. That being said we ask customers to be in our office by 9:00/12:00 to get fitted for crampons, gearing up and getting to know. Return times can vary depending upon many factors but the 3:00-3:30 (6:00-6:30) range is our goal, and except on rare occasions we always make this time.
The Ice Climbing trip starts at 8:00 in our office and gets back around 4:15.
We are located at 405 4th ave, right on the outskirts of Seward’s historic downtown. If you are coming in on the highway, stay on that course as you enter the town. The highway will turn into 3rd ave, and will eventually start going up a hill as you continue into town. Continue up the hill past the AVTEC building on your left to Madison St and take a left. Take your next right onto 4th ave. We are located on the right side of the street at the end of the block.
If you are coming from the train station or the small boat harbor, go down 4th ave, up and over the hill, past the AVTEC building on your right. We are on the right side of the street on 4th ave, almost on the corner of 4th and Jefferson.
What we provide...
Crampons, trekking poles, helmet, backpack, hydration system and snack. Our crampons are Black Diamond Contact Straps which blend ease of use with high performance and durability better than any on the market. Our trekking poles are easy to use as well and can be worth their weight in gold for sore knees or navigating the scree. Our backpacks are new last year and have plenty of room to hold all your personal items like jackets and cameras while being extremely comfortable with completely adjustable shoulder, lumbar and load straps. The hydration pack holds 2 liters of water and fits inside a special sleeve in our backpacks so your water is always right where you need it- by your mouth. The snack is a g.o.r.p. mix (good ole’ raisins and peanuts, and chocolate) and an energy bar. Let us know of any dietary restrictions and we can modify the snack for you.
What you need to bring or should bring...
A sturdy pair of shoes. A sturdy shoe or boot is essential to your comfort on our trip. Boots are best, but if you don’t own a pair then your most comfortable hiking shoe will work. Tennis shoes or casual sneakers are not recommended. Rain
jackets are also a must and ones that are of the wind/rain proof design are best as they are generally thinner and lighter weight. Some layers like a fleece or liners are always good just keep in mind the hike up can get fairly hot. On normal days we’re down to short sleeves for the hike up. The glacier can get drafty so some layering at that point is a good idea but remember we are not on an artic expedition. Anywhere from 55-65 degree range is a safe bet.
Some comfortable hiking pants (cotton or denim jeans absorb water and are not recommended), a hat and/or beanie, a light pair of gloves, sun glasses, sun screen and hiking socks are all recommended and will make the trip that much more comfortable. Don’t forget your camera! Eat a normal breakfast that morning and let us take care of your snack on the trail. For the climbing trip you need to bring a good pair of gloves that are somewhat waterproof without being bulky and rain pants and jacket. All other gear is the same as the Ice Hiking trip.
What are we doing and where are we going...
Taking the scenic (and only) route through Resurrection River Valley the drive takes about 20 minutes in our ‘Glacier Bus’ to reach the Exit Glacier Visitors Center. After an information and safety meeting we get started. We can start our hike description best by saying we believe that the more effort you put into a hike, the more you get out of it. Consequently, our hike takes people up a 1-1.5 hour long incline, through an alpine valley, down a 45o rock scree, and onto the surface of Exit Glacier itself. While you don't have to be a track star or a sherpa to complete the trip, it does take a little effort and a willingness to get tired and a smidge dirty in order to reach the glacier. The trail gains 1400 feet of elevation over 1.4 miles to the highest point and this usually takes about an hour and a half with rest stops at overlooks and interesting features. We wind our way through a changing glacial environment of deciduous to alpine while identifying the vegetation and glacial features along the way, always keeping an eye out for local friends of marmots, moose and black bear. At our highest point we navigate a scree slope down to the glacier’s edge where we get out and get on our crampons. After some instructional usage and crampon safety we head out onto the glacier surface for about an hour. Never going the same way twice we navigate all over the glacier from medial moraines, compaction zones, moulons and crevasse fields. After the ice its back up and back down the trail to our trusty bus Duke. The total distance covered is approximately 4 miles.
Payment and Cancellation Policy...
Cancellation is as follows: up to two weeks before the trip there is a complete refund, two weeks to 48 hours there is a 50% payment fee, within 48 hours there is no refund. Rarely do we cancel trips but occasionally the weather can create
white out conditions on the glacier and we will postpone a trip, or some other unforeseen reason will cause a trip cancellation by us. If this happens we will not charge the credit card. *(note our liability ends by not charging the customer a fee or trip price for cancellations by us)
Exit Glacier Guides P.O. Box 1812 Seward, AK 99664
907-224-5569 (May - September) 907-491-0552 (October - April)