Nestled in the mountains behind Eagle River, AK is Mt. Baldy. The hike to the top is an excellent choice if your time in Alaska is limited.
The trailhead begins at the end of a spacious parking lot, which also offers some impressive views if any members of you party cannot make the climb. The trail is well-marked and well-traveled, so there should be little confusion on your way to the top.
Whether you are hiking alone, or you have the family with you, Baldy is an attainable goal. The trail can be steep in places, but it is a great place to bring the family. All sorts of berries can be found along the trail during the summer months and the occasional wildlife sighting should be expected. Hiking to the top early in the season, however, can be a challenge. Early in the year, the trail is usually covered in snow, ice, and mud. Be careful if you choose a day early in the season or right after rain, because the trail will inevitably be slick.
Once you reach the top you are instantly presented with scenic views of Anchorage, Mt. Susitna, and Denali (Mt. McKinley) in the distance. Take your time enjoying the view! (Mt. Baldy is a popular spot for paragliding. Keep your eyes peeled for them soaring above you!)
As with any hike, be very careful on the descent. The trail can be very steep in places, so take your time coming down the mountain. This is especially important if the trail is wet.
- Hiking boots
- Trekking Poles
- Extra layers (if needed)