Though you can’t drive all the way to Juneau, Alaska from the lower 48 without taking a ferry somewhere along the way, once you’ve arrived in the remote Alaska state capital, there’s plenty to see and do.
RVers will appreciate the incredible natural beauty of Mendenhall Campground. Set on the shores of Mendenhall Lake, this U.S. Forest Service campground presents Mendenhall Glacier in full view.
The glacier sits within the Tongass National Forest, which is the largest national forest in the United States, and visitors can watch icebergs calve off its frozen face into Mendenhall Lake. Mendenhall Glacier is just one of 38 major glaciers that extend from the 1,500-square-mile Juneau Icefield. Many visitors to the area enjoy flightseeing tours where helicopter tours land on the glaciers, offer glacier treks and even glacier dog sled rides.
Mendenhall Campground offers 69 sites, most with full hookups including 30/50 amp electrical, sewer, water, showers, a dump station, interpretive trails, and paved roads.
Golf is another activity you don’t normally expect to see in Alaska, but there are several courses around the state. Mendenhall Golf Course in Juneau offers a par 27, nine-hole course that measures 1,400 yards. It’s a great little course, especially if you need to improve your short game.
Speaking of short game, golfing in Alaska has a short season, usually May through September, weather permitting, of course.
Another popular attraction in Juneau is the Goldbelt Mount Roberts Tramway. Beginning at the cruise ship dock, cars travel 1,800 feet up to the Mountain House which offers spectacular views of Juneau and Gastineau Channel.
Just walking through the picturesque downtown area of Juneau is a great way to get acquainted with this compact city. Many of the main attractions can be found in this area including the Saint Nicholas Russian Orthodox Church, several museums, the state capitol building, and century-old buildings that today are gift shops, restaurants, pubs, and other specialty stores.
For more information about the Juneau area, visit the Juneau Convention & Visitors Bureau. You can also read more about Mendenhall Campground on RV LIFE Campgrounds.
Rick Stedman is an avid golfer, RVer, and writer who lives in Olympia, Washington. Rick writes a golf column, “The RV Golfer,” which is published every month in rvlife.com. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.