Last week, we began our ongoing series to present the best walks and hikes in the U.S. for all different levels of skills and physical abilities. We are going state by state to see beautiful places around the country. Going outside, be it to exercise or simply unwind, has proven health benefits.
While Alaska is one of the most difficult states to travel to, it offers stunning natural beauty. At 663,268 square miles, it's over twice the size of Texas — the next largest state. Alaska has tundra, mountains, active volcanos and 34,000 miles of tidal shoreline. Here are four beautiful walks so you can enjoy what the state has to offer.
Potter Marsh Trail
This boardwalk is wheelchair accessible and a wonderful spot to birdwatch. Muskrats, moose and salmon also frequent the area. This trail is located at the southern end of the Anchorage Coastal Wildlife Refuge. It has free parking and a bathroom. As this is a spot for bird watching, dogs are not allowed. The boardwalk stretches out for 1,550 feet. Learn more and get directions here.
Nugget Falls Trail
Nugget Falls Trail lets you get up close and personal with multiple natural wonders all in one walk. According to one reviewer, Stournay, on TripAdvisor, “You can walk right up to the falls, and the glacier is right next to it!” That is quite impressive, especially and the trail is only 1.8 miles and a there and back. Good for both wheelchairs and dogs this trail is ideal for families and people with mobility issues. It’s described as beautiful and peaceful if you go at a quiet time. But, its beauty and ease of accessibility make this a very popular path. More information and directions can be found here.
Angel Rocks Trail
This beautiful 3.6-mile loop trail can get muddy during rainy times and has a 1,204 feet elevation change. That may be too much for some people but, for others, this moderately trafficked path through an evergreen forest might be just right. The Alaska State Parks rangers stress that parts of the trails may be steep and proper footwear is suggested. The trail begins — and therefore ends — at a picnic spot. For more information, click here.
Rabbit Lake Trail
At 8.7 miles, out and back, Rabbit Lake Trail is the longest and most strenuous hike we are including on this list. In addition to hiking, many people like to camp around the lake. There is an elevation difference of 1,440 feet from the highest to lowest points in the trail. In winter, the trail fills up with skiers. Not only are there views of the lake and peaks but also of Anchorage. Take note, one reviewer on Yelp noticed bear scat. Though he has never seen a bear there, he does carry mace when he walks the trail. For directions, click here.