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Alaska is massive. At more than 660,000 square miles, it’s nearly one-third the size of the contiguous 48 states. It accounts for two-thirds of the country’s national parklands, about 80% of wildlife refuges and is home to the two largest national forests. I was fortunate enough to spend nearly four years here. That’s not nearly enough time to see it all, but it gave me a pretty good idea of what the 49th state has to offer. I’m happy to be able to share some of the best trails for hiking in Alaska!
A brief overview of Alaska: the Last Frontier for hiking
Few other places offer such a diverse setting as Alaska. You can experience fjords and an uncut temperate rain forest in the southeastern part of the state. You’ll discover transitional and boreal forests in Alaska’s south central and interior area. The arctic tundra is further north. Opportunities to see glaciers close up abound throughout the state. With relatively low tree lines, you can also explore alpine hiking without the elevation.
Why hiking and backpacking is the best way to see Alaska
Alaska might seem like a place only for the daring. While opportunities abound for backcountry wilderness adventure, you can also find easy day hikes on well-prepared trails. Alaska hiking features hundreds of trails and plenty more places without trails. Every kind of hiker, regardless of fitness level, gear, and experience, can find a way to enjoy Alaska’s hiking trails. So, if you’re planning a visit to the U.S.’s largest and most wild state, be sure to make time for a hike or two by exploring a side of the Last Frontier you won’t see from a tour bus or cruise ship!