Anchorage, visitors to McCarthy and Kennecott generally take a shuttle or rental vehicle to Chitina, where the paved road ends. From there, you can arrive either by bush plane or by a scenic 60-mile dirt road. The McCarthy road was once the route of the railroad, running mining supplies all the way to Kennecott, filling up with
copper ore, and turning around in McCarthy at the McCarthy turntable. Now, it is an adventurous ride featuring scenic views of the Crystalline Hills, the Tuaharpies, Mount Drum, and other beautiful views of the Wrangell Mountains.
The McCarthy Road is the only overland route to and from the settlements of McCarthy and Kennecott. It ends at the west bank of the Kennicott River. There is public parking for a small fee. Plan to leave your car there as both communities rest beyond the east bank of the Kennicott River. They are connected by a four-mile single lane dirt road permissible to foot, bicycle, ATV and locals-only vehicular traffic. To get between the West Side and the East Side, visitors cross a pedestrian footbridge. Public bus, hotel, and Wild Alpine shuttles provide rides on the East Side between the footbridge, downtown McCarthy, the McCarthy Airstrip and Kennecott. We recommend packing your essentials in easy-to-carry duffel bags as shuffling gear is a major component of getting around here!