If you love to hike, Anchorage, Alaska and the surrounding areas are some of the best destinations in the world for hiking trails. Imagine stepping out of your Alaska cottage or cabin and enjoying a morning hike. The trails in this area range from beginner to advanced. No matter what time of the year you visit, the scenery is spectacular and the trails are worth hiking.
When you’re in the mood for a shorter trail with beautiful scenery, there’s no better hiking destination than Portage Pass. This short 800-foot elevation trail was historically used by both Alaska natives and Russian fur traders. The trail is somewhat steep, so it’s perfect for intermediate hikers. The entire hike is around two miles in length, though this is doubled if you’re doing a round trip. The trail is a descending one that takes you past a couple of serene lakes. It’s also the only trail in the region that provides a magnificent view of the Portage glacier.
If you’re an experienced hiker, then Bird Ridge is the trail for you. The entirety of the trail is uphill, so it’s a pretty difficult climb. However, it offers very picturesque views of the surrounding areas. It’s around 2.5 miles in length, so you might want to pack an energy bar and water bottle, especially if you do a round-trip hike. In general, the hike should take you around 6-8 hours. For the easiest climbing, stick to the ridge line.
Crow Pass is an amazing trail located in the Chugach Mountains. It’s a very lengthy trail that takes you across a lot of unique scenery. In total, the trail is 21 miles in length, so it’s recommended that you do the hike in 2-3 days. You can turn back at any time, so the amount of time you spend on the trail all depends on preferences. The first five miles contain some of the most breathtaking views of the entire trail. During the hike, you’ll run into a lot of the local wildlife, as well as glaciers and waterfalls. In regards to difficulty, this is a moderate trail.
Thunderbird Falls is a one-mile trail that makes for a short and easy hike along the edge of a canyon. Throughout the duration of this trail, you’ll be walking through a calm birch forest before eventually reaching the end viewing platform. This platform offers a fantastic view of the 200-ft. Thunderbird Falls waterfall.