Scandinavian Peaks Hut on the Matanuska Glacier in the Chugach Mountains.

Photo by Wayne Todd.

Scandinavian Peaks Hut on the Matanuska Glacier in the Chugach Mountains.

Photo by William Finley.

Hans' Hut on the Whiteout Glacier in the Chugach Mountains.

Photo by Travis Taylor.

The Mint Hut near the Mint Glacier in the Talkeetna Mountains.

Photo by Wayne Todd.

Scandinavian Peaks Hut

Built in 1990 among the magnificent Scandinavian peaks of the Matanuska Glacier area. It provides a great base camp for the exploration of the area and assaults on the neighboring peaks.

  • Water: 40 yards behind the hut-small rivulets draining form the ice, might be frozen in the morning. Water can also be obtained on the Scandinavian Glacier below.
  • Human Waste: Use your own trash compactor bags in a 5 gallon bucket or the Rest Stop which is provided by Meekin's air service. All human Waste must be packed out.
  • Inventory: Sleeps 10, insulated, 2-burner Coleman cook stove, bring your own fuel.
  • Location: Matanuska glacier, adjacent to the Scandinavian Glacier, 18 miles from the parking lot at the terminus of Matanuska Glacier, elevation 5150 feet.
  • Coordinates: 61 35.500 N 147 28.500 W

Access

 

Accessing the hut requires glacier travel skills, beware of inherent risks.

Fly-in: A gravel Super Cub airstrip exists about ¼ mile from the hut. It is a one-way only landing and take-off and requires tundra tires but it is in an excellent shape. From the strip head uphill on the tundra benches for 700 feet to find the hut. In winter a landing can be made on Scandinavian Glacier on skis, 5 minute ski form the hut.

Walk-in - Winter: The Glacier can be accessed over the frozen Caribou Creek by driving down the dirt road on the eastern side of the Caribou Creek bridge and traveling down the creek to the toe of the glacier and gaining the glacier itself. Staying on the north side of the glacier for the first 2 miles, then gaining the medial moraine in the center of the glacier for easier travel. Be aware of avalanches coming from Fog Peak (8555). Once you reach the moraine adjacent to the Scandinavian Glacier climb up 700 feet, the hut is located close to the moraine, directly across from Denmark Peak.

Walk-in - Summer: From the glacier access parking lot, descend to the toe, gain the glacier and stay on the north side for the first 2 miles, then work your way to the center and gain the medial moraine. Continue up the glacier, aiming for Fog Peak (8555) and the area directly below the west face. Do not get off the glacier below the ice fall near Fog Peak or you will have difficulties getting past it, instead get off the ice below the large avalanche zone. This is the extent of the glacier travel for summer access. Once off the ice follow the trough next to the glacier, eventually reaching a creek draining from the landing strip area and disappearing below the glacier. Follow the creek up to the airstrip, crossing it to the upper end. You can't see the hut yet. Climb up grassy benches or continue to the moraine adjacent to the Scandinavian Glacier, ascend 700 feet. Hut is located very close to the moraine, across from Denmark Peak.

History

Constructed on Labor Day of 1990. Pre-fabricated the same year in May. The work crew consisted of Willy Hersman, Gretchen Staeheli, Dave Staeheli, Ron Van Bergeyk, Doug White and Ken Zafren. On Saturday six loads were helicoptered in by Lambert De Gavere and were all in place by 4:00 p.m. The rest of the day the crew prepared the construction site in partly cloudy conditions. Sunday weather got even better and allowed for the framing, insulating and installation of vapor barrier. The metal siding was installed in the darkness in preparation for rain, which never came. The same evening Doug White flew out with pilot Mike Meekin. On Monday the crew installed windows, door, more insulation and vapor barrier. Finishing touches were administered to the outside. Ken Zafren flew out that same night. On Tuesday weather deteriorated, 2 inches of snow fell, but it did not slow progress. The inside got painted for the second time and 3 tons of rocks were placed on the outriggers to stabilize the hut, front porch was added. After finishing the hut the crew utilized two days to accomplish several extra projects and build a taxi stand by the airstrip, 600 feet below the hut, a 4x6 metal shed protecting those awaiting a plane or supplies from getting wet. Unfortunately the shed collapsed over time and is no longer in use. They flew out on Friday with Meekin (Scree, October 1990).

On July 2009 Greg and Mary Beth Bragiel flew into the hut with Meekin to clean, organize, caulk, paint exterior, place bear guard on back window, paint floor and out house.


Gallery
Scandinavian Peaks Hut in 2005. False Denmark is in the background.  Photo © William Finley Wayne Todd, Carrie Wang, Chris Cannon and Toby Schwoerer get a weather break.  Photo © Wayne Todd Marybeth Bragiel paints window trim. Photo © Greg Bragiel A freshly painted hut and privy (bring WAG bags) dry in the sun.  Photo © Greg Bragiel
A freshly painted hut is backdropped by False Norway Peak.  Photo © Greg Bragiel Chris Cannon, Toby Schwoerer and Carrie Wang wait out a long storm by playing Settlers.  Photo © Wayne Todd Finland and Sweden Peak backdrop the hut. Note the down time igloo.  Photo © Wayne Todd Chris and Toby ski out from the hut. They returned a day later.  Photo © Wayne Todd
The Matanuska Glacier backdrops the hut. Marcus Baker Peak is at top right.  Photo © Travis Taylor Norway Peak is one of a dozen peaks than can be climbed in a day from the hut. Glacier travel skills are  required for most.  Photo © Wayne Todd Loft window repair. Photo © Wayne Todd

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Many thanks to: Wayne Todd, Tim Silvers, Ross Noffsinger, Steve Gruhn, Carrie Wang, Billy Finley and many others who provided information, ideas and photos. And thanks to Willy Hersman who created, managed and hosted the first MCA website, without which this site's development would have been so much more difficult. Current website donated by Couloir Graphics.