Chugach State Park

Quick Facts

Chugach State Park

Alaska

(907) 345-5014

Map Directions

Things To Do

Overview

Beyond the foothills at Anchorage's edge lies the third largest state park in America - a half-million acres of some of the most accessible hiking, skiing, camping, wildlife viewing, snowmachining, rafting, and climbing in Alaska. The mountainous backdrop to Anchorage is breath taking. The Chugach foothills are a beacon for changing weather, and resident wildlife have been known to wander into town. Chugach is listed as one of the top ten state parks in the country by America's Best.

Map of Chugach (AK)

Latitude, Longitude: 61.212324, -149.305018

READ MORE

Activities

  • Boating

    Boats permitted on Eklutna Lake are non-motorized or with an electric motor only. Boats must be carried by hand to the lake, a distance of up to several hundred yards. All motorized and non-motorized boats 10 feet long or greater are required to be registered.

    Because glacial streams are clouded by sediment, it is difficult to see underwater obstacles. And because they are icy cold, any dunking can have serious consequences. Boaters must be very good at reading the water's surface, and at keeping a boat upright! The challenge added to a river by cold or silty water is enough to increase the "class" or difficulty rating by at least one point.

  • Bicycling

    Bicycles and mountain bikes are allowed on some former road surfaces within the park. These areas provide good visibility and a good surface for riding. Some excellent biking trails are: the Eklutna Lakeside Trail (12 miles), the Peters Creek Trail (first 5 miles), the Near Point Trail from Prospect Heights to end of homestead roadbed (3 miles), and the Powerline Trail from Glen Alps to Indian (11 miles). Bicycles are also permitted on the gasline trail from Prospect Heights to Indian, from Prospect Heights to the old Homestead site on the Middle Fork Trail (about 3 miles), and the Bird Creek logging trails. Other trails in the park are closed to bike use.

  • Camping

    There are three campgrounds in Chugach State Park, offering experiences ranging from fishing, hiking, whitewater rafting, wildlife viewing, and spectacular sunsets. Two are north of Anchorage - one at Eklutna Lake, and one on Eagle River - and the third is south of Anchorage at Bird Creek.

    All have wooded sites with fire rings and picnic tables, water and latrines. Campground hosts offer assistance and answer questions about the area. Firewood is often available near the host's site for a small fee. Campsites for organized groups are available by reservation at Eklutna Lake Group Use Site.

    There is one public use cabin and two public use yurts available for backcountry overnight stays.

  • Climbing

    Climbing is allowed on many of the trails in the park.

  • Fishing

    Fishing is permitted in parts of the park during legal seasons. The required fishing licenses, and regulations published by the Alaska Department of Fish and Game, are available at local sporting goods stores. A detailed chart about hunting in the park, and the rest of Unit 14C, is found in the published hunting regulations at the Alaska Department of Fish and Game.

  • Hiking

    There are 27 maintained trails in Chugach State Park. Visit park website for more details.

  • Horseback Riding

    Horses are allowed in most of the park. However, campgrounds and picnic areas, the Eagle River Valley from Crow Pass to the Nature Center, the Meadow Creek Drainage, the Turnagain Arm Trail, and the Flattop Mountain Trails are closed to horse riding. The park in the vicinity of the Glen Alps Trailhead is also closed to horse use except for one trail from the Glen Alps parking area to the Powerline Trail. Other trails in the Hillside area are generally open but may be closed seasonally to prevent damage.

  • Hunting

    Target practice is forbidden in the park. During legal hunting seasons (limited seasons, limited areas), discharge of weapons is not allowed within one half mile of any campground, picnic area, ski area or other facility, or any roadway in the park including the Seward Highway.

  • Off Highway Vehicles

    ATVs and other small OHVs are allowed on two trails in the park: the Bird Creek Trail and the Eklutna Lakeside Trail. Eklutna Trail is open to ATVs Sunday through Wednesday, April 1 through November 30 only. ATVs must have safety equipment as required by state law. Operators must have a valid driver's license, or have an instruction permit and be accompanied by an adult of 18 or older, or, if under 14 years, be accompanied by an adult of 21 years or older. Please note that motorcycles are prohibited.

  • Picnicking

    There is the McHugh Creek Picnic Site along Turnagain Arm at Mile 112 of the Seward Highway, south of Anchorage.

  • RVing

    Vehicles must remain on roadways, parking areas, or camping pads. Posted speed limits and parking regulations are enforced for your safety.

  • Water Sports

    See "Boating" and "Fishing"

  • Winter Sports

    Snowmobiles are allowed in five areas of the park when snow conditions are adequate. All snowmobiles must be currently registered with the Department of Motor Vehicles before they can be operated in any state park, and must have required safety equipment.

Directions

Driving

East of Anchorage, along Glenn and Seward Highways.

Flying

Aircraft landings are limited to the "Bold" Airstrip, located at the up-valley end of Eklutna Lake. Be aware that the gravel airstrip is not maintained.

Phone Numbers

Primary

(907) 345-5014

Links