These frontier towns came to play a major role in Alaska's history just after the turn of the century. Copper was discovered on Bonanza Ridge and that discovery led to the development of the famous Kennicott mines. The boom town of McCarthy sprang up 5 miles away and became the miners town, with saloons, gambling and a thriving red light district. In 1938 the mine closed and left two "ghost" towns, right in the middle of what was to become the largest and most spectacular National Park in the United States.
Today they offer the visitor a unique Alaskan experience and make for an excellent jumping off place for more extensive exploration of the wilderness backcountry. In McCarthy and Kennicott you'll find lodges, B&B's and a range of guided activities including glacier hikes and river rafting. There are restaurants, gift shops, espresso, and gourmet ice cream for those hot summer days. A scheduled van service runs every hour that will take you to Kennicott. Guided tours of the town of Kennicott and the 14 story mill building are also available.