Girdwood

This consists of a diverse population of outdoor enthusiasts, local businesses, services, and Anchorage commuters.

Welcome to Girdwood

Located 38 miles southeast of Anchorage, approximately a 45-minute drive from downtown Anchorage, Girdwood lies in a valley in the Chugach Mountains near the end of the Turnagain Arm of Cook Inlet. Originally named Glacier City, Girdwood was founded as a gold mining town at the turn of the century with several gold claims being staked on Crow Creek and the Virgin and California Creek drainages. As the number of miners increased, a supply camp arose that also supplied a trail stop on the route between Seward and Ship Creek which is now Anchorage. James Girdwood was an Irish immigrant and linen merchant with four gold claims on Crow Creek. He later became the namesake of our mountain community.
 
Though founded as a mining town, the development of Girdwood was spurred by railroad construction begun by the Federal Government in 1915. The little town boomed with new businesses. Mining in the upper Crow Creek area continued into the late 1930s when mine closures by a World War II presidential order made Girdwood a near ghost town. In 1949, Girdwood again flourished as construction began on the Seward Highway connecting the seaport of Seward to Anchorage. In 1954, eleven local men formed the Alyeska Ski Corporation along with the beginnings of the hard-earned dream of a first-class ski resort. In 1960, the first chair lift and a day lodge were built. Francoise de Gunzburg, a Frenchman and a member of the Rothschild Banking family managed to secure a used chair lift from France that was dismantled, shipped to Alaska, and rebuilt at Alyeska.
 
Then, tragedy struck. On Good Friday in 1964, an earthquake with a magnitude of 9.2 dropped the coastal edges along the Turnagain Arm 8 to 10 feet! Consequently, the townsite of Girdwood moved two and 1/2 miles up the valley to the present location. Three years later, the resort was sold to Alaska Airlines and the General Manager, Chris von Imhof, then the Director of Tourism for the State of Alaska, was hired to run the resort. The Nugget Inn, the original hotel, was built and a second chair lift was constructed on the upper mountain.
 
Finally, in October 1980, Seibu Corporation purchased Alyeska Resort and invested heavily in its development. Seibu built a new high-speed quad chair, a fixed quad, and a 60-passenger aerial tramway. In addition, The Westin Alyeska Prince Hotel, a luxurious 307-room hotel, was opened in August of 1994, a mountaintop facility with a fine dining restaurant and skier's cafeteria was also included.
 
Present-day Girdwood consists of a diverse population of outdoor enthusiasts, local businesses, services, and Anchorage commuters. Girdwood has much to offer the Alaskan visitor all year round. Complete with a mercantile, a post office, a variety of B&Bs, restaurants and bars, boutiques, and shops, Girdwood can supply any need at any time of the year.

Overview for Girdwood, AK

2,076 people live in Girdwood, where the median age is 44 and the average individual income is $69,402. Data provided by the U.S. Census Bureau.

2,076

Total Population

44 years

Median Age

Medium

Population Density Population Density This is the number of people per square mile in a neighborhood.

$69,402

Average individual Income

Around Girdwood, AK

There's plenty to do around Girdwood, including shopping, dining, nightlife, parks, and more. Data provided by Walk Score and Yelp.

1
Somewhat Bikeable
Bike Score

Points of Interest

Explore popular things to do in the area, including Crepes De Paris.

Name Category Distance Reviews
Ratings by Yelp
Dining 2.07 miles 9 reviews 3.7/5 stars

Demographics and Employment Data for Girdwood, AK

Girdwood has 1,012 households, with an average household size of 2. Data provided by the U.S. Census Bureau. Here’s what the people living in Girdwood do for work — and how long it takes them to get there. Data provided by the U.S. Census Bureau. 2,076 people call Girdwood home. The population density is 88.125 and the largest age group is Data provided by the U.S. Census Bureau.

2,076

Total Population

Medium

Population Density Population Density This is the number of people per square mile in a neighborhood.

44

Median Age

59.2 / 40.75%

Men vs Women

Population by Age Group

0-9:

0-9 Years

10-17:

10-17 Years

18-24:

18-24 Years

25-64:

25-64 Years

65-74:

65-74 Years

75+:

75+ Years

Education Level

  • Less Than 9th Grade
  • High School Degree
  • Associate Degree
  • Bachelor Degree
  • Graduate Degree
1,012

Total Households

2

Average Household Size

$69,402

Average individual Income

Households with Children

With Children:

Without Children:

Marital Status

Married
Single
Divorced
Separated

Blue vs White Collar Workers

Blue Collar:

White Collar:

Commute Time

0 to 14 Minutes
15 to 29 Minutes
30 to 59 Minutes
60+ Minutes

Schools in Girdwood, AK

All ()
Primary Schools ()
Middle Schools ()
High Schools ()
Mixed Schools ()
The following schools are within or nearby Girdwood. The rating and statistics can serve as a starting point to make baseline comparisons on the right schools for your family. Data provided by the U.S. Census Bureau.
Type
Name
Category
Grades
School rating
PUBLIC
PreK - 8th
5/5

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