Welcome to the community of Yakutat,
gateway to the Hubbard Glacier and home of the St. Elias
Dancers, a Tlingit dance group.
Located on the scenic Gulf Coast of Alaska, and surrounded
by Wrangell-St. Elias National Park and Tongass National
Forest, Yakutat attracts a wide variety of outdoor
enthusiasts to hike beaches, float rivers, explore bays and
passages, climb mountains, view glaciers, and surf remote
breaks. Yakutat Bay provides the finest saltwater sport
fishing in Alaska.
A variety of visitor services are
available in Yakutat, and Alaska Airlines provides daily jet
service from Seattle, Juneau, and Anchorage. Additionally,
the Alaska State Ferry Kennicott now stops in Yakutat
several times each month during the spring, summer, and
early fall seasons.
Mount St. Elias stands like a perfect
pyramid soaring 18,008 feet into the heavens on the Yakutat
skyline, the second tallest peak in the United States. The
Tlingit name is Was-eiti-shaa, meaning "Mountain in Icy
Bay". Danish explorer Vitus Bering watched the mountain
emerge as the mist cleared following days of fog-bound
drifting while exploring for the Czar of Russia in 1741. The
discovery was made on, and named in honor of a Danish
holiday, St. Elias Day. Mount St. Elias rests at the head of
Malaspina Glacier, the largest piedmont glacier in North
Hubbard Glacier is the largest tidewater glacier in North
America and is located just 30 miles by air or water from
Yakutat. During the spring of 2002, as in 1986, the glacier
advanced across the mouth of Russell Fiord, creating the
world's largest glacial lake.
Many marine mammals were temporarily trapped within this
newly formed impoundment. Fortunately, the ice dam broke
prior to overflowing the Situk River system, freeing the
stranded wildlife. As a result, the community of Yakutat
continues to enjoy the beauty of our land and resources.
Each spring and fall, major migrations of waterfowl,
raptors, and shorebirds pass along the Yakutat Coast
providing outstanding viewing and photography opportunities.
Hundreds of thousands of salmon spawn in area rivers and
streams each fall, attracting concentrations of foraging
eagles and brown bears