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Edgerton Hwy & McCarthy Road


The paved Edgerton Highway begins at mile 82.6 of Richardson Highway 4 South and travels 33 miles southeast, through Kenny Lake to Chitina. The Edgerton skirts the Copper River, legendary for its world-class red salmon fishery, which forms the western boundary of Wrangell-St. Elias National Park.

The Chitina Ranger Station can provide park and road information. Kenny Lake is home to a mercantile and an RV Park, offering a pleasant respite for adventurous visitors, while shops, services and accommodations are available in Chitina, also home to the last gas station for sixty miles.

Running 60 miles from Chitina to the historic mining towns of Kennecott and McCarthy within Wrangell St. Elias National Park, the McCarthy Road was long considered one of America’s most primitive wilderness roads. Substantial upgrades have been performed in recent years and the first third is now paved. The road is laid over the original railway bed; coupled with extreme Alaskan temperatures and permafrost, the result is a narrow, pot hole filled, washboard surface, which can be very hard on vehicles. Not all car rental companies in Anchorage and Fairbanks allow for travel on the McCarthy Road.

Some car rental companies in Anchorage and Fairbanks allow travel on the McCarthy Road. Departing from Glennallen, Kennicott Shuttle offers pick-up service from lodges, B&Bs, campgrounds and RV parks in the Copper River Valley, for traveling into Wrangell-St. Elias in comfort; (907) 822-5292.

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