The Eagle River Nature Center

You’ll discover the beauty of the Eagle River Valley as you begin your drive along Eagle River Road. Residential areas will give way to breathtaking views of glacially-carved mountains. At Mile 12 you will reach the log cabin nature center – a threshold for connecting to the ever-changing landscape beyond.  The Nature Center is operated by a small, grass roots non-profit organization.  We hope you'll visit us and take some time to enjoy the trails and programs we offer.


June 5 - August 30, 2020:  Staff will provide information services outside the front entrance of the Nature Center Fridays-Sundays, 11am-4pm.  

THE NATURE CENTER BUILDING IS CLOSED UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE DUE TO COVID-19 SAFETY CONCERNS.  CLASSES ARE CANCELLED.  THE TRAILS & CABIN/YURTS REMAIN OPEN.  Please keep a physical distance from other hikers on the trails and/or wear a facial covering.  Cabin/Yurt use should be limited to household members only.

There are trail maps available at the front door of the Nature Center.  Staff are keeping the latrine stocked and clean in the round-about in front of the parking lot.  Our overflow parking lot will be closed starting July 29, 2020 through August while construction crews work on a new parking lot.  If our upper lot is full, please consider finding another location in the park to hike.  Parking on Eagle River Road is not allowed where "No Parking" signs are visible.  

Please help the Nature Center by paying for your parking passes.  Donations and memberships are always appreciated, especially during these challenging times.  Thank you and enjoy our trails.  The volunteers and staff work hard to keep them in great shape.   


June-August 2020:  Building is closed.  Trails and cabin/yurts remain open, but please read information regarding your safety.  Staffed information desk outside front of building Friday-Sunday, 11am-4pm.

September-December 2020:  Unknown at this time.

Video by KTVA about the Nature Center

Contact Information

  • Phone: 907-694-2108 
  • Fax: 907-694-2119 
  • Eagle River Nature Center  32750 Eagle River Road  Eagle River, AK 99577 
  • 501c3 non-profit #92-0156981.  Established 1996. 

Parking fee:  $5/vehicle. Hiking for more than a day?  $10/vehicle for up to 3 days.   Limited parking area for RV's and vehicles with trailers.  Our overflow parking area is NOT suitable for RV's or trailers and is not open during the winter months.  Please DO NOT park along Eagle River Road or side streets where "NO PARKING" is indicated - you may receive a ticket.  You may park further down Eagle River Road where there are no signs. 

The trails are always accessible.  Trail maps are located at the front door of the Nature Center, inside when open, or on our website.

Group field classes (guided and unguided for schools, camp groups, scouts, etc) are available by appointmentCommercial Tour Operators must have a Nature Center permit to operate here.  Contact us for details.  




  • August 2020 Program (pdf printable file)
  • We welcome back our fabulous seasonal summer staff and volunteers:  Timothy Kane, Hannah Welsch, and Tim Goral.
  • Community mourns the passing of Ben Schneider.
  • Long-time staff naturalist Ute Olsson has announced that she will be retiring at the end of August 2020 to spend more time with her family.  Ute has been an integral part of the Nature Center team since 2000 leading the naturalist department:  developing and conducting programs for schools and the general public; providing outreach to school classes, scout groups, summer camp groups and other organizations; developing interpretive displays; and much, much more.  She will be greatly missed by all of us.  Fortunately, she will remain connected to the Nature Center by being a substitute/on-call naturalist in 2021.  We can't thank Ute enough for her dedication, enthusiasm, professionalism, and service to the community.  
  • Congratulations to Isabella Higgins for receiving her Junior Astronomer Certificate.  Great work Isabella!  More on our blog.
  • Volunteer Andrew Fisher has been working hard all year cleaning and making new owl nesting boxes.  2019 turned out to be a successful year.  Find out more on our blog page.  Thank you Andrew!
  • ALL IN-HOUSE PROGRAMS ARE CANCELLED until further notice, but check our new online ZOOM programs and Friday Facebook Little Explorers.
  • Thank you to everyone who has supported the Dick Griffith Matching Challenge and Pick Click Give.

Thank you to our very generous sponsors:

Alaska Airlines**, Alaska Chapter of Women in Insurance & Financial Services***, Alaska Community Foundation and the Trails Trees and Kids Fund**, Alaska Regional Hospital Auxiliary **, Alyeska Pipeline Service Co.**,  BP*,  Camp Denali **, CIRI**,  ConocoPhillips*,  Eagle River-Chugiak Rotary ***, Fire Lake Preschool ***, GCI *** , Jeffrey and Rebecca Moore Family Foundation **,  Latouche Pediatrics,  MEA Charitable Trust**, REI Co-op*, Pick. Click. Give. , Rasmuson Foundation*,  TOTE Maritime Alaska** and  Walmart***.

* $5000 or more; **$1000-$4999; ***$500-$999