Red Shirt Cabin 3 celebrates the ancient spirit of Red Shirt Lake as a gathering place. The lake once featured large salmon runs and summer camps for Dena’ina Native groups, and still hosts private cabins on its southern half. The cabin may be perfect for large parties in quest of lake action, a platform for those who want strenuous days of paddling, fishing, swimming, and motoring followed by rousing evening campfires.

From its perch on its own private island in the middle of the vast 1,186-acre backcountry lake, you have a vantage over all this activity. Large windows provide a long view of another island and great sunset light. Its open front porch has a high roof as dramatic as a plantation house portico. This is adventure seasoned with pinch of style and a taste of luxury.

Although miles into the backcountry, the cabin has the feel of a place on a recreation lake in the front-country. Its flamboyance will bring a grin to your face as you make your final approach across water or ice.


A well-used 16-by-24 cabin with sleeping space for eight on wooden bunks and an ample bench. With wood stove, cooking space and table. Fire ring, picnic table and outhouse are outside.

This place feels even bigger than it is. Cabin 3 has its long side facing lakefront and is dominated by a battery of large windows. This wonderful summer asset makes the cabin more difficult to heat in winter. Downed wood is sparse on the island and may be difficult to gather after snowfall. Be prepared to gather and transport firewood from park areas on the mainland. A camp saw — or seasoned wood brought from home — may be essential to ensure comfort during cold snaps. Lake water must be purified before drinking.

What Can You Do At Red Shirt Lake Cabin 3?

  • Paddle for miles along the shore and into Lynx and Fish Creeks.
  • Fish for Northern pike as long as your arm. (Landing nets recommended!)
  • Landing site has solid, gently sloping bottom good for swimming.
  • Ski, snow-shoe or snowmobile on an extensive winter trail system.
  • Land at East Red Shirt Lake Trailhead on the eastern shore and explore an untouched Susitna Valley forest. The trail ultimately leads deep into the park, with connections to Nancy Lake Parkway and Chicken Lake.
  • Watch for wildlife: great platform for viewing swans, loons, bald eagles and beavers.
  • In winter, snowmobile and ski trails cross in front of the porch for easy access to adventure or transportation.
  • Enjoy a large indoor space, with a big central table perfect for preparing meals or playing epic board games.

Getting There

Latitude: 61.63643
Longitude: -150.15905


If by foot, first drive 6.5 miles to the parking lot at the end of Nancy Lake Parkway, just outside the entrance to South Rolly Lake Campground. Then hike three miles through rolling moraine country on the Red Shirt Lake Trail. Canoes stored at the shore can be rented from Tippecanoe Rentals in Willow at 907-355-6687. Cabin 3 is a one-half-mile paddle south out of the cove and then east toward the island. Floatplanes may be used. Here is a good PDF map of the area.


Depending upon snow conditions and ice cover, you can travel to Red Shirt Lake by snow vehicle, skis, snowshoe, snow bike or foot. Check the park conditions report first. Beginning at the winter trailhead at Mile 2.2 of the Nancy Lake Parkway, it is about 7 miles to Red Shirt Lake over the winter trail and less than a mile southwest across the lake to the island. Ski-equipped planes may also be used.

Break Up / Freeze Up

None of the cabins on Red Shirt Lake can be reached when ice is too thin.

Driving Directions


Red Shirt Lake Cabin #3