This rustic log cabin nestles into the forest about 1.5 miles up the Iditarod Trail off on a side trail. It has the feel of an old-time Alaskan trapper’s home. Although perched at the edge of hard-core wilderness — deep inside the mountains — this cabin is close to trails maintained by the Nature Center itself, giving families with small children the option of combining short hikes with education. The facilities can also be used as a first-night stop for people doing the Cross Pass Crossing to Girdwood. They will be quiet: no motorized recreation allowed.
Paradise Haven Cabin sleeps eight on wooden plywood bunks and features a table and benches. Firewood should be stacked in woodshed nearby for use in the indoor heating stove. Water can be found in summer at a fresh-water pond, although it must be purified. It is close to the Albert Loop Trail and about a half mile from the river. It’s a great place to stay if you’re planning to explore the Iditarod Trail but don’t want to carry overnight supplies too far.
A bear-proof food locker, splitting maul, bucket, broom, dustpan and snow shovel are also provided. Wood for outdoor campfires must be gathered in the forest, so taking a camp saw may be helpful. The cabin entry isn't keyed but can be locked on the inside. Dogs are welcome. The trails are non-motorized — hiking, skiing, snowshoeing. No bikes. And remember, stream and river water must be purified.
Here is a PDF map showing trails and cabin locations.
What Can You Do At The Public Use Cabin At The Eagle River Nature Center?
- Take a nature walk. The Eagle River Nature Center is known for its educational programs and well appointed trail displays.
- Explore Eagle River’s shore. The cabins are close to this wilderness river, with views of mountains and wildlife.
- Hike. The 21-mile trail connects the nature center with Girdwood over Crow Pass. Do it in one long day or make it a multi-day trip. Along the way, there are countless options for exploration.