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Alaska Cruises Talkeetna, Alaska (towl-KEET-nuh)
Recommended Activities and Tours  •  Lodging  •  Recommend Reading

Current Population: 876 (2010)
Borough Located In: Matanuska-Susitna Borough
Taxes: 5.29% Borough, 5% Bed

Location and Climate
Located at the junction of the Talkeetna and Susitna Rivers, lies 115 miles north of Anchorage at mile 226.7 of the Alaska Railroad. The paved Talkeetna Spur Road runs 14 miles east off the George Parks Highway, at Milepost 98.7. The community lies at approximately 62.323890° North Latitude and 150.109440° West Longitude (Sec. 24, T026N, R005W, Seward Meridian). Talkeetna is located in the Talkeetna Recording District. The area encompasses 41.6 sq. miles of land and 1.4 sq. miles of water.

January temperatures range from -33 to 33; July can range from 42 to 83. Precipitation is 28 inches, including 70 inches of snowfall.

History, Culture and Demographics
The Talkeetna and Chulitna Rivers join the Susitna River at Talkeetna, a Dena'ina (Tanaina) Indian word meaning "river of plenty." Talkeetna was settled as a mining town and Alaska Commercial Co. trading post in 1896. A gold rush to the Susitna River brought prospectors to the area, and by 1910, Talkeetna was a riverboat steamer station, supplying miners and trappers in the Cache Creek, Iron Creek, and Broad Creek districts. In 1915, Talkeetna was chosen as the headquarters for the Alaska Engineering Commission, who built the Alaska Railroad, and the community population peaked near 1,000. World War I and completion of the railroad in 1919 dramatically decreased the population. Talkeetna has since developed as an aviation and supply base for Mount McKinley expeditions. Several of its old log buildings are now historical landmarks, and Talkeetna was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in April 1993. State land disposals and homestead programs helped the community grow.

Talkeetna is popular for its recreational fishing, hunting, boating, flightseeing, skiing, and dog mushing. Local businesses provides services to Denali climbers.

According to Census 2010, there were 744 housing units in the community and 449 were occupied. Its population was 3.7 percent American Indian or Alaska Native; 91.4 percent white; 0.3 percent black; 0.5 percent Asian; 0.5 percent Pacific Islander; 3.4 percent of the local residents had multi-racial backgrounds. Additionally, 1.8 percent of the population was of Hispanic decent.

Economy and Transportation
As the take-off point for fishing and flightseeing trips, and a staging area for Mount McKinley climbing expeditions, Talkeetna provides air taxis, helicopters, outfitters, and related services. Numerous air taxis provide transport to Kahiltna Glacier Base Camp. All climbers must register for Mount McKinley and Mount Foraker (Talkeetna Ranger Station phone is 907-733-2231).

Talkeetna is accessible by road, air, and the Alaska Railroad. The Talkeetna Spur Road, off of the George Parks Highway. There are two state-owned runways. One is an asphalt paved 3,500' long by 75' wide runway; the other is a 480' long by 85' wide gravel strip. There are three additional airstrips in the vicinity, including one owned by the U.S. Bureau of Land Management. A new Alaska Railroad depot was completed in August 1997.

Talkeetna Visitor Information and Recommend Activities


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Did You Know?
City Of Anchorage. In 1915 President Woodrow Wilson authorized funds for the construction of the Alaska Railroad. Ship Creek Landing was selected as the headquarters of this effort. A Tent City sprang up in the wilderness at the mouth of Ship Creek, and soon swelled to a population of over 2,000. On July 9, 1915, the Anchorage townsite auction was held, and over 600 lots were sold. Although the area had been known by various names, in this same year the U.S. Post Office Department formalized the use of the name Anchorage, and despite some protests the name stuck.
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