Trail Descriptions

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Listed below are brief descriptions of the 23 trails covered in the book.  Each trail listed in the book is characterized by Length, Elevation, Land Ownership, USGS Map #, Best Time of year for Usage, Level of Difficulty, Travel Time and Best Modes of Travel and includes narrative describing individual points along each trail.

Old Man Trail - Located just past mile 130 on the Glenn Highway north of Anchorage, Old Man Trail  is perfect for the person who likes open high country with plenty of lakes and streams for fishing.  High peaks and rolling hills can be seen for many miles in all directions.  The best feature of this trail is the excellent chance to see many varieties of wildlife.

Belanger Pass - Belanger Pass Trail is for the person who likes high elevations and rugged terrain.  This area is above the tree line in high rolling hills.  At the beginning of this trail, there are fantastic views of Gunsight Mountain and the Chugach Mountain Range.  

Squaw Creek - Squaw Creek Trail is for the person who would like to travel through some of Alaska's most beautiful alpine forest.  The easy trail travels just above Squaw Creek in the bottom of a giant valley.  Although the trail is in the trees most of the time, there is an excellent view of the high peaks on Sheep Mountain.

Gunsight Mountain - This trail is for the person who is looking for panoramic mountain views above the treeline on a short easy trail.  This trail is used by hikers to climb Gunsight Mountain winter and summer.  It is also used by hunting and fishing enthusiasts to access the Squaw Creek area.  

Squaw Creek Access - Squaw Creek Trail is for the person looking for a short trail to fantastic mountain views above the treeline.  This is an old trail that was constructed before the Glenn Highway to access the Squaw River Valley for hunting and fishing.  Many use this trail to hike to the summit of Gunsight Mountain in winter and summer.

Lake Leila Trail - This trail is for the person who is looking for a good place to put a canoe in the water and go fishing.  This beautiful high mountain lake is just off the Glenn Highway.  The fishing is best on the east side where a good size stream flows into the lake, according to a regular fisherman in the area.

Pinochle Creek/Hicks Creek - Pinochle Trail is for the person who likes high open country with vast scenic views.  The first portion of this trail travels through some low marshland that is usually very muddy.  It then follows through a thick forest area as it slowly climbs into high rolling tundra.  From this high point, the trail then travels down a steep hill into the Hicks Creek Basin and follows the creek to Hicks lake.

Purinton Creek - This trail is for the person who likes panoramic views of high rugged mountain peaks from low rolling hills below.  For the first eight miles of this trail, there are spectacular views of the Chugach Mountains to the south.

Permanente Road - Permanente Road is for the person who likes a fun easy trail with majestic views of the King River Basin.  This is an excellent trail for the whole family.  The tiered ledges of Castle Mountain, consisting of almost pure limestone, can be seen from the Glenn Highway.

King River/Young Creek - King River and Young Creek Trail are for the person who likes traveling through beautiful forests with lakes, streams and rivers.  This is a great trail for a one day family picnic; under dry conditions the trail is easy for the children and just long enough to make it fun.

Eklutna Lake Trail - This trail is for the person who wants to see a glacier, waterfalls and the largest lake within the Municipality of Anchorage.  This trail offers the best wilderness experience and easiest access of any trail near the largest city in Alaska.  Dall Sheep are abundant on the 7500 feet scenic peaks surrounding this trail.

Twin Peaks - Twin Peaks Trail is for the person who is interested in viewing dall sheep in a high remote valley.  This trail is located just north of Anchorage and is in Chugach State Park.  Motorized vehicles are prohibited.

Bold Peak Trail - This trail is for the person who would like a steep hike around a glacier moraine with a spectacular view of the Eklutna Glacier and Bold Peak.  Dall sheep are abundant in this area and its possible to see mountain goats, moose, or even grizzlies.

Bird Creek Trail - This trail is for the person who likes traveling through dense woods and needs a trail close to Anchorage.  This trail is in the Chugach State Park, and is just a short distance south of Anchorage.  Around this trail is a maze of old logging roads, each interconnecting or ending on a hillside.  The main trail meanders through thick evergreens as it follows Bird Creek to the back of this valley.

Knik River Trail - This trail is for the person who wants to travel on a vast and level river basin ending at a huge glacier.  The forest lines the edges of large beach areas with uncommon sand dunes as far as the eye can see.  The trail dives off and on the beach to avoid deep areas in the meandering river.  Once through the heavily wooded area, the trail becomes flat, open brushland for miles.

McKinley Park Road - McKinley Park Road is for the person who wants to view lots of wildlife and the tallest peak in North America.  This mostly gravel road travels into the heart of the Denali National Park and is one of the easiest parks in the world for viewing wildlife.  The park can be reached by plane, train, car or bus.

Butte Lake Trail - This trail is for the person who wants to find a good fishing lake.  Butte Lake is the largest lake in this section of the Denali Highway, and locals claim it is one of the best fishing spots in the area.  The lake is over two miles long and over one-half mile wide.  lake trout, whitefish and grayling are predominant types of fish caught in this lake.  The trail travels through high rolling tundra with small lakes in all directions.

Butte Creek Trail - This is another good trail for hunting and fishing.  The first section of this trail travels along the western side of the Susitna River on an old mining trail.  It soon passes Snodgrass Lake where grayling fishing is generally excellent.  This trail begins in high tundra, but as it approaches Butte Creek, it becomes a beautiful alpine forest.

Roosevelt Lake Trail - This trail is for the person who would like to travel though the largest gold mine operation in Alaska, to reach a good fishing lake.  This trail also passes through many smaller active mining claims on the way to Roosevelt Lake.  During the summer months, this four wheel drive trail gets lots of mining traffic.  

Windy Creek Trail - This trail is for the person who wants an easy trail to view wildlife in open high country.  This four wheel drive trail was built to access a copper mine, which is now inactive at the far end of this valley.  The trail begins traveling around a beautiful high mountain lake as it slowly climbs above timberline.  It then parallels Windy Creek from a distance to the south. 

Timberline Trail - Timberline Trail is for the person who would like to travel through an old abandoned gold mine that closed down during World War II.  The trail begins by traveling through a heavily forested area, and then slowly climbs above the treeline.  it then crosses Timberline Creek and passes by the old rusty equipment and dilapidated buildings of Timberline Mine.





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Last modified: May 09, 2001