Saturday, March 19, 2016

Sheep Mountain Lodge and Area

 Where we stayed: Sheep Mountain Lodge

Sheep Mountain Lodge has guest rooms, small cabins, and slightly larger premium cabins. There was also RV parking, each space had a picnic table and a water spigot. There were also 20v and 30v plugins but I'm involved with exactly zero of hooking up our motorhome so I'm not sure what that means, or if they even work. Call ahead if it's imperative that you have electricity for your RV. There's also a shower hall with restrooms on the property.

They also have about 12 miles of clearly defined trails (plenty of maps to bring with as well as signposts on the way) which they are currently grooming for cross country skiing, although you can hike or sled on them as well. If you hike past cabin #11 and stay to the right until you reach the part where it levels out a bit? If you brought your sled you can turn around and sled down approximately 1/3 mile and the equivalent of 11 flights of stairs all the way back to the parking lot. Pro tip: Use your feet for steering (drag the corresponding foot lightly in the direction you want to go).

In the area is amazing scenery. It never lets up. From the Talkeetna Mountains directly to the south to the Chugach Mountains to the North with glaciers and major scenery in between. There's lots of pullouts for photo ops along the way. Oh, and I included a terrible picture of the aurora (my tripod and I were fighting) to show what it could look like. Bring a tripod that doesn't need to be tightened. :)

Where we ate: Sheep Mountain Lodge

The lodge and restaurant is currently operating on limited winter hours which meant at this point they're only open Friday-Sunday. We ate breakfast there and everything we ordered was delicious.

Where we ate: Long Rifle Lodge

A very charming lodge/restaurant with amazing views of the Matanuska Glacier and good "home-y" food. Leave room for dessert. Seriously. The rhubarb pie and blueberry crumble were especially good. They seemed to open regular hours but you might want to check ahead if you're relying on them for a meal. Also, check out the teeniest gas station ever in front. And there's a meadow just below the lodge where we spotted a moose so you might want to make sure you look down as well. There's a ton of tracks which suggests this isn't a rare sight there.

 Matanuska Glacier is also in the area, you can read about our previous visits here or here. The road down to the private property to access the face of the glacier is currently extremely slick and they recommend only 4-wheel drive vehicles attempt it. I'm not sure about the public viewing point.

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