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Located in the Mat-Su Valley in the heart of scenic Alaska, Lake Lucille is a small lake with a rich history. Most of Lake Lucille's shore is privately owned and rimmed with lakeshore residences. Public access to the 362 acre lake is at the Lake Lucille Park on the southern shore. Owned by the Matanuska - Susitna Borough, the park is a wooded area with a campground including tent and RV sites, fire pits, restrooms and a campground host. Access to Lake Lucille is from a short boardwalk to the water.
Lake Lucille is a natural lake, but its outlet has a weir with a fish pass. Maintained by the City of Wasilla, the weir allows fish to pass from Lake Lucille and travel eleven miles down Lucille Creek into Meadow Creek and finally on to Big Lake. The Alaska Department of Fish and Game began stocking the lake with steelhead and rainbow trout in 1954. In later years they stocked salmon and other fish. In March 2002 there was a winter kill on Lake Lucille, but the Department of Fish and Game restocked the lake with rainbow trout in May of the same year. Today the fishing is excellent with rainbows in excess of twenty inches. Lake Lucille is a popular summer and winter fishery.
Lake Lucille is located in Wasilla, hometown of the Republican Party's 2008 Vice Presidential candidate Sarah Palin. With 7,000 people, Wasilla is one of Alaska's larger communities, and it is growing. About a third of Wasilla's residents commute to work in Anchorage, a one-hour drive each way. The Town of Wasilla became a station on the Alaska Railroad in 1917. The original railroad depot still exists and is on the National Register of Historic Places. A government land auction increased settlement in the area and Wasilla became the Willow Creek Mining District Supply staging point helping to equip the gold mines. By the 1930's and 40's, farming had become one of the areas primary industries.
Wasilla's transportation history makes it one of the more accessible parts of Alaska, and visitors to Lake Lucille will find any amenities they might want. There are strip malls, retail and fast food chains and various accommodations. Wasilla also has a multi-use sports complex with a NHL regulation size indoor ice rink and an artificial turf field. There is a proposed trail that would link the sports complex to the park at Lake Lucille.
The Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race Headquarters are very near Lake Lucille. The 1,100 mile race to Nome has its ceremonial start in Anchorage the first Saturday in March. The race's actual start is in Wasilla or Willow depending on snow conditions. There is a visitor center with historical displays at the Headquarters and a gift shop. In the summer visitors can also tour some Iditarod racer's kennels.
There are plenty of fish in Lake Lucille, and there is plenty to do in Wasilla and the surrounding area. Its rich history and easy accessibility makes Lake Lucille a great Alaska getaway.
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