Swan Lake Cabin Review

Planning a trip to Swan Lake Cabin along Resurrection Pass in Alaska? This public-use cabin sits next to a stunning lake in the Kenai Mountains.

The trail to the cabin is a 12.7-mile one-way hike from the south trailhead in Cooper Landing or a 26.2-mile one-way hike from the Resurrection Pass Trail North in Hope. You can also access it from Devils Pass.

In this post, I’m going to review the Swan Lake public use cabin.

Swan Lake Cabin Review

Swan Lake Cabin is a public use cabin that sits on the eastern tip of Swan Lake in the Kenai Mountains near Cooper Landing. It’s available to reserve year-round, although it can be difficult to access during certain times of the year due to snow conditions.

Cabin Amenities

  • Wooden sleeping platforms
  • Wood heating stove
  • Wood table with bench seating
  • Small deck
  • Rowboat with oars
  • Pit latrine
  • Fire ring

The cabin is equipped with a wood heating stove. Cabin users are responsible for supplying their own wood, but you may find some that the previous guest left behind. A splitting maul and saw are available on-site.

The cabin is small and sleeps six people on two wooden sleeping platforms. The maximum occupancy is eight people. The cabin is very clean.

One of the best things about this cabin is that you’ll find a rowboat on site. You can spend time rowing across the lake or fishing for rainbow trout, lake trout, Dolly Varden, and sockeye salmon. Keep in mind, fishing equipment is not provided and fishing permits are required.

There is NO running water, electricity, or trash service in the cabin. You will have to pack out what you pack in. You may want to bring some cleaning wipes so you can tidy up before and after your stay.

Swan Lake sits right in front of the cabin, which you can use as a water source. Make sure to purify your water before using it.

swan lake cabin review resurrection pass trail

Swan Lake Cabin Location

The trail to the cabin starts from the Resurrection Pass Trailhead in Cooper Landing, which is about a 2 hour drive from Anchorage. From Anchorage, you will drive down the Seward Highway to Cooper Landing.

The cabin sits next to Swan Lake and the views from the front deck are amazing! It’s definitely one of my favorite cabin views on the entire trail.

You’ll find yourself surrounded by a spruce and birch forest and you’ll have views of the Kenai Mountains. Berries ripen in this area from mid-July through mid-September.

Parking is included in the cost of the cabin. Make sure to print out your Alaska State Parks parking permit and fill in your registration number to avoid getting a ticket.

swan lake cabin view resurrection pass trail alaska

Trail Difficulty

Resurrection Pass Trail South to Swan Lake Cabin – 12.7 miles one-way

From Resurrection Pass Trail South, it’s 12.7 miles one-way. The trail is well-maintained and usually highly trafficked during the summer months. It takes about 5 hours to reach the cabin this way, which makes it a great overnight stay on your hike through the pass.

Resurrection Pass Trail North to Swan Lake Cabin – 26.2 miles one-way

From Resurrection Pass Trail North, it’s 26.2 miles one-way. This would be the longer route to reach the cabin and would only make sense if you’re biking or on a multi-day hike.

resurrection pass trail sign to juneau lake or hope

Winter Access

During the winter, you can access the cabin via Bean Creek Trail, which is the common winter route access. Winter travelers need to be able to evaluate avalanche and over-ice travel conditions. For more current travel conditions call the park rangers.

It’s important to note that winter access can be very difficult on foot or bike. It’s much easier during odd years, which is when motorized use is allowed on the trail. This allows snow machines to help pack down a good trail for hiking or fat-biking to the cabin.

How to Reserve Swan Lake Public Use Cabin

To reserve the cabin, you will need to visit the reservation site here. The cabin costs $75 per night during peak season (May 1-Sep 30).

Check-in/Check-out Times

  • Check-in time: 12:00 p.m.
  • Check-out time: 12:00 p.m.

Resurrection Pass Trail Public Use Cabins

There are eight public use cabins along the trail. It is unlawful to use a public recreation cabin without a cabin permit, so make sure to book your reservation online.

Here is a list of cabins with mile markers:


Trout Lake Cabin (Mile 7.3)
Romig Cabin (Mile 9.0)
Juneau Lake Cabin (Mile 9.5)
Swan Lake Cabin (Mile 12.7)


Caribou Creek Cabin (Mile 7.1)
Fox Creek Cabin (Mile 11.7)
East Creek Cabin (Mile 14.5)
Devils Pass Cabin (Mile 21.5)

Conclusion: Here’s What I Really Think…

If you’re looking for a cabin to stay at while backpacking Resurrection Pass Trail near Cooper Landing, Alaska, then I recommend staying at Swan Lake Cabin.

The cabin is situated in a great location. It’s very private in comparison to some of the other cabins along the trail, and you can have fun exploring the lake using the rowboat on site!

Pin This Post For Later

Stay at this remote public use cabin on Resurrection Pass Trail near Hope Alaska. Swan Lake Cabin is a cabin that you can rent and sits next to a lake in the Kenai Mountains. If you want to add some adventure travel to your Alaska vacation then add this hike in or backpacking cabin to your list. Alaska | Hiking in Alaska | Alaska Cabins  Alaska Trails | Alaska Backpacking | Alaska Thru Hike

Do you have any questions about the this public use cabin in Cooper Landing? Leave them in the comments.

About Andrea Kuuipo

I was born and raised in Anchorage and have been able to travel to many places around Alaska. As an Alaska Travel Blogger, I love sharing my favorite things to see and do in my home state to help others plan an incredible trip!

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