(Remember you are responsible to get yourself from drop off points to pick up points.)

Explore Girdwood/Alyeska

Get out of the city of Anchorage and take the Turnagain Arm Shuttle to Girdwood/Alyeska Resort a small, quaint, alpine ski village. This self-guided tour to Girdwood is truly ideal for the independent traveler who enjoys breathtaking views and the chance to spend time in Girdwood, hiking or the many other adventures offered here.

Your shuttle will take you directly to Girdwood where you can take the free Glacier Valley Transit shuttle to various location in the quaint town called Girdwood. Enjoy stunning hiking trails and views that will take your breath away and make your heart palpitate. Take the time to read up on all that Girdwood has to offer and if you still need help ask the concierge desk at Alyeska Resort for all the activities available. Did you know if you hike up Alyeska that the ride down is FREE?!?

The shuttle drops off at Girdwood Station where you will need to take the local bus into the city or Alyeska.
(See: https://www.turnagainshuttle.com/girdwood-bus-service)

Girdwood/Alyeska: Leave Anchorage and Arrive Girdwood

Depart Arrive  
8:00 am 10:25 am  
9:00 am 11:25 am  
10:00 am 12:25 pm  
11:00 am 1:25 pm  
12:30 pm 2:55 pm  
1:30 pm 5:05 pm This shuttle make a one hour stop at AWCC
2:30 pm 4:55 pm Not recommended unless planning to stay in Girdwood
3:30 pm 5:55 pm Not recommended unless planning to stay in Girdwood

Girdwood/Alyeska: Leave Girdwood and Arrive Anchorage

Depart Arrive  
10:30 am 12:00 pm  
11:30 am 1:00 pm  
12:30 pm 2:00 pm  
1:30 pm 3:00 pm  
3:00 pm 5:00 pm  
5:05 pm 6:40 pm  
5:00 pm 7:00 pm  
6:00 pm 8:00 pm  

Portage Valley -- Enjoy a meal at Portage Day Lodge and enjoy stunning hiking trails like the Trail of Blue Ice and Byron Glacier Trail. You can also rent a bicycle for a relaxing tour of the Valley. Other activities include taking the one-hour cruise on Portage Lake up to the face of Portage Glacier. We really recommend this cruise for the full effect, if you're up for it, time on the water is life altering! And you can discover the interesting geology and natural history of Portage Valley at the Begich Boggs Visitor Center.

Portage Glacier Lodge: Leave Anchorage and Arrive Portage

Depart Arrive  
8:00 am 9:50 am  
9:00 am 10:50 am  
10:00 am 11:50 am  
11:00 am 12:50 pm  
12:30 pm 2:20 pm  
1:30 pm 4:15 pm This shuttle make a one hour stop at AWCC before entering Portage you could technically make the 4:30 pm boat but no time to visit Portage Valley.
2:30 pm 4:20 pm Not recommended unless planning to stay in Girdwood or Portage
3:30 pm 5:20 pm Not recommended unless planning to stay in Girdwood or Portage

Gold Panning -- Get out of the city of Anchorage and take the Turnagain Arm Shuttle to Indian Valley Gold mine. This self-guided Goldpanning adventure is an opportunity to visit a real mine that helped shape the area. The Goldpanning Tour is truly ideal for the independent traveler who enjoys breathtaking views of Turnagain Arm. This self-guided tour allows you freedom to break away from the tour groups and try your luck at Goldpanning on your own and return at select times. Your journey to Indian Valley Goldmine begins with a custom tour of Turnagain Arm and is a treat you won't want to miss. On the way to the Indian Valley you will be traveling down Alaska's most scenic stretch of highway known as Turnagain Arm. Your adventure includes a Turnagain Arm Tour with highlights listed below.

When you are ready to continue on simply board the shuttle at the time you chose and with a confirmed seat back to Anchorage. We will be making a stop at Potter Marsh on the return journey back to Anchorage.

Indian Valley Gold Mine: Leave Anchorage and Arrive Indian Valley

Depart Arrive  
8:00 am 11:00 am You will only have 45 minutes to pan for gold
9:00 am 12:00 am You will only have 45 minutes to pan for gold
10:00 am 1:00 pm You will only have 45 minutes to pan for gold
11:00 am 2:00 pm Recommend because you will have 1:45 minutes to pan
12:30 pm 3:40 pm Recommend because you will have 1:45 minutes to pan
1:30 pm 5:30 pm Recommended because you will have one hour to pan
2:30 pm 5:40 pm Not recommended unless planning to stay in Girdwood
3:30 pm 6:40 pm Not recommended unless planning to stay in Girdwood

NOTE: DUE TO THIS ROAD HAVING MANY DELAYS PLEASE MAKE SURE THAT YOU HAVE A WORKING CELL PHONE WHEN TRAVELING INDEPENDENT.

We recommend that you check with the local carrier GCI in the 5th Avenue mall to see about paying for a SIM card so that you can be reached in case of an emergency. Since you are an independent traveler you are responsible and must be able to reach us, or us to reach you should schedule delays happen. If you miss your scheduled return time you are responsible for your own ride back to Anchorage and no refunds will be applied.

It is the goal of the Turnagain Arm Shuttle to encourage independent travel. We want you to get out of our vehicles and go out and explore on your own. But this comes with a cost of you being responsible to yourself and to those trying to accommodate you. Be vigilant on your communication.

Definition of Independent traveller: Taken literally, independent travel means any trip that you organized by yourself – booking your own accommodation, transport and itinerary as opposed to going somewhere as part of a holiday package.

Tour Highlights:

  • Beluga Point: Popular photo stop with panoramic views of Turnagain Arm, with possible opportunities to see Dall sheep and Beluga whales. Timing is everything if we are fortunate you will see both!

  • Portage Valley: You will see Explorer Glacier, Middle Glacier, Byron Glacier and Take a Walk through a Rainforest. Next grab a snack or meal to enjoy on your ride back to Anchorage at Portage Day Lodge.

  • Alaska Wildberry Products: See the World's Largest Chocolate Water Fall! The store hires locals to pick "Alaskan Berries" to make into the wonderful delights. You can also watch the workers make these delights through the glass wall. At the chocolate display case there is a tray of sample chocolates and if you did not sample the item you wanted to try just ask they want to satisfy.

  • Potter Marsh: With its nearly panoramic view of Turnagain arm, Potter Marsh, peppered with spruce, cottonwood and alder trees, is one of the most accessible and scenic wildlife viewing areas in Anchorage. About halfway along the boardwalk, Rabbit Creek flows underneath and provides a good spot to see spawning chinook, Coho, or humpback salmon from May to August, depending on the species. Moose also frequent the marsh year round. May and June are good times to see these large ungulates standing in the marsh foraging for new growth.

Prior planning is best, please dress in layers, wind and precipitation are common in the mountains where the sea is close by. Remain well hydrated to ensure your comfort and maintain situational awareness of your time and surroundings for best safety.