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Welcome to Park History Nancy Lake SRA, located in the broad Susitna River Valley, owes its topography to ancient glaciers that once covered the land. When the glaciers retreated some 9,000 years ago, they left behind a rolling landscape of glacial deposits and hundreds of lakes and ponds. Humans arrived once the glaciers melted, and two Dena’ina Athabascan village sites—found buried just outside the recreation area—suggest that this land was used for fishing, hunting, and trapping. With the construction of the Alaska Railroad in 1917, homesteaders settled the nearby towns of Wasilla, Houston, and Willow. The Nancy Lake area—too rugged and swampy for easy development—remained wild, natural, and largely untouched. Today, these features make Nancy Lake SRA one of our most distinctive state parks. Nancy Lake Frazer Lake For More Information State Recreation Area Nancy Lake Ranger Station Mile 1.3 Nancy Lake Parkway Mailing Address: 7278 East Bogard Road Wasilla, AK 99654 (907) 495-6273 www.alaskastateparks.org Background photo courtesy of Victor Stanculescu Inset photo courtesy of Doug Gasek Alaska State Parks Area Highlights Canoe Trails Little Noluck Lake portage Photo courtesy of LRHolzapfel Welcome Nancy Lake State Recreation Area (SRA) is one of the few rolling, lake-studded landscapes in Alaska’s state park system. Crystal clear lakes wreathed by pristine forests provide an idyllic setting for canoeing, fishing, hiking, skiing, and camping. Nancy Lake SRA’s canoe trails are a great place to get your paddles wet. Beginning at the Tanaina Lake Canoe Trailhead, the popular Lynx Lake Canoe Trail travels through an eight-mile chain of lakes and is an ideal weekend getaway. Portage locations are well marked with signs, and wet sections of the trail are covered with boardwalk. Other routes can be explored along the trail by continuing south from Lynx Lake to Butterfly and Skeetna lakes. If you don’t own a canoe, you can rent one from a local concessionaire and pick it up at the canoe trailhead. There’s no excuse for missing one of Alaska State Park’s best trail systems, and there’s absolutely NO excuse for not wearing your lifejacket along the way. Public-Use Cabins With 13 rustic cabins on the shores of Nancy, Lynx, James, Bald, and Red Shirt lakes, Nancy Lake SRA’s public-use cabins are a great way to camp in style. Several cabins are accessible by foot from the Nancy Lake Parkway, while others are only accessible via canoe during the summer. In winter, remote cabins can be accessed with snowshoes, skis, or snowmachines. All cabins are equipped with basic amenities such as a heating stove, wooden bunks, and a latrine. Lake water or snowmelt should be purified before drinking. Visit www.alaskastateparks.org for reservations, locations, and availability of cabins. Winter Recreation Under a blanket of snow, the rolling topography of Nancy Lake SRA is ideal for cross-country skiing, snowmachining, and dog mushing. With nearly 40 miles of maintained trails and lots of opportunities for backcountry snowshoeing, ice fishing, snowmachining and skiing, Nancy Lake SRA is a superb winter playground. Wildlife Nancy Lake SRA’s landscape of lakes, wetlands, and forest creates an ideal habitat for an assortment of wildlife including beavers, loons, eagles, arctic terns, moose, black bears, and the occasional brown bear. Proper storage of food and garbage will minimize the chances of dangerous human-wildlife interaction. Make noise while hiking and please give all wildlife, especially nesting loons, a wide berth. Loon on Nancy Lake Photo courtesy of LRHolzapfel Public-use cabin #1 at Red Shirt Lake Nancy Lake SRS Lo Mushing at South Rolly Overlook Photo courtesy of Victor Stanculescu Lake Road ng Pa rk sH Nancy Lake ig h wa Big Darell Lake y Little Darell Lake Alman Lake Nancy Lake SRA Jano Pond Rhein Lake North Rolly Lake Winter Trailhead Heins Pond way ark eP ak cy L Bald Lake Nan South Rolly Overlook Tanaina Lake Trailhead Shem Pete Lake Milo Lake Tanaina Lake South Rolly Lake Red Shirt Lake Trailhead Ardaw Lake Jackknife Lake Milo Pond South Rolly Lake Campground Little Noluck Lake This is bear habitat... Duck Lake Big Noluck Lake ake Road nx L Ly Frazer Lake Map Legend Little Frazer Lake Restroom Charr Lake Maintenance Station Parking James Lake Camping Owl Lake Host Cabin Lynx Lake RV Camping Picnic Shelter Red Shirt Lake Boat Launch Javit Lake Canoe Launch Water Station Hiking Lion Lake Information & Registration Echo Ponds Public-Use Cabin Host Cabin Candlestick Lake James Lake public-use cabin Photo courtesy of LRHolzapfel Buckley Lake Phoebe Lake Private Property Manta Lake Roads Park Boundary Heart Lake Summer Trails Host Cabin Butterfly Lake Winter Trails Ski Trails Canoe Trail Skeetna Lake Seismic Line Trails—Winter Only er N Big Noluck Lake Photo courtesy of LRHolzapfel Trails Red Shirt Lake Trail Access: Red Shirt Lake Trailhead (end of Nancy Lake Parkway) Travel Means: Foot Distance: 3 miles one way to Red Shirt Lake This easy trail follows the tops of glacial hills and moraines to rustic lakeside campsites with a latrine. There is no well at this site, so backcountry campers will need to pack or purify their own water. Lynx Lake Loop Canoe Trail South Rolly Lake campground Little Susitna Connector Canoe Trail Access: Skeetna Lake Portage Travel Means: Canoe with portages Distance: 4.3 miles from Little Susitna River to Lynx Lake You can also access the Nancy Lake canoe trails via the Little Susitna River. From the canoe launch at mile 57 of the Parks Highway in Houston, it takes four to five hours to reach the Skeetna Lake Portage. The river is fairly easy traveling, but some canoeing experience is a plus. Watch for the sign marking the portage and use caution when meeting powerboats. Camping Alaska State Parks offers two main campgrounds in this area that can be accessed from the road system. Nancy Lake State Recreation Site, on the northeast shore of Nancy Lake, has 30 campsites and can be reached from mile 66.5 of the Parks Highway. South Rolly Lake Campground, located at the end of the Nancy Lake Parkway, has 91 campsites and is adjacent to the Red Shirt Lake Trailhead. All sites are equipped with fire rings and picnic tables, with access to water and latrines. Several remote backcountry campsites can be found throughout the area along popular trails. Check the map for camping locations. Fishing Report Access: Tanaina Lake Canoe Trailhead (mile 4.5 Nancy Lake Parkway) Travel Means: Canoe with portages Distance: 8-mile loop The wild, wet landscape of Nancy Lake SRA is best seen by boat. Lynx Lake Loop Canoe Trail travels over 14 placid lakes, with well-marked portage sites and boardwalks covering the wettest sections of trail. The loop can be paddled in a day, but numerous campsites and public-use cabins along the way make it an ideal weekend trip for those who want to take their time. Riv Su Lit tle Many lakes and ponds in the Lynx Lake Loop have populations of northern pike. Fish measuring up to 14 inches are common here, with the occasional 20to 24-inch lunker prowling the water. Explore off the beaten paths to find great fishing. Trout can be found north of the Nancy Lake Parkway in North Rolly, West Rolly, and Rhein lakes. Northern pike are easy to catch and they put up a decent fight. They are considered an invasive species in this area, so catch and eat all you want and consider it a favor to the trout populations. Photo courtesy of Travis Shinabarger There are several private cabins within and adjacent to Nancy Lake SRA. Please respect all private property and trespass signs.