Brotherhood Bridge Fireweed Field - Atlas Obscura

Brotherhood Bridge Fireweed Field

Every summer, the Mendenhall River greenbelt comes alive with an explosion of magenta flowers. 

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Each year from July to August, the Mendenhall River greenbelt comes alive with an explosion of fireweed flowers. This meadow by the Brotherhood Bridge is filled with tall, showy wildflowers, which blanket the land in magenta blossoms.  Fireweed is the best-known wildflower in Alaska, and its petals can be harvested and used to make a delicious syrup or jelly.

This field also provides a spectacular view of Juneau’s beloved Mendenhall Glacier, which looms 4,500 feet high over 13.6 miles. The Mendenhall is one of 38 glaciers flowing from the 1,500 square mile Juneau Ice Field. 

The Brotherhood Bridge was designed by Roy Peratrovich, Jr, who was a leader of the Alaska Native Brotherhood, to connect Glacier Highway across the Mendenhall River. Though originally built in 1965, the current bridge was completed in 2015.

Know Before You Go

Though the fireweed will typically peak around late-July and last until mid-August, this will vary year-to-year depending on weather conditions. 


Heading north on Glacier Highway, turn right at  Industrial Boulevard just after Brotherhood Bridge. The field is situated at the beginning of the Mendenhall River / Kaxdigoowu Heen Dei Trail.

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April 15, 2022

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