Hatcher Pass with Kids- Alaska
Hatcher Pass is located in the Talkeetna Mountains, sandwiched in-between Willow and Palmer, north of Anchorage, Alaska. The drive up to this area is beautiful and a perfect place to spend the day exploring if have kids in tow. There is an awesome mix of nature and history in this area, making the adventure worth your entire day. Plus there is something for everyone here, from the smallest of folks to older kids.
Things to do in Hatcher Pass, Alaska:
1. Explore Independence Mine State Historical Park.
Here you will find the remnants of an old gold mining camp! Learn how the early Alaskan settlers panned for gold and lived in this old mining area. There is no overnight camping in this spot and there is a parking fee of $5.00.
2. Visit the Summit Lake State Recreation Site.
Located about 2 miles past the Independence Mine Historical Park, this is a perfect spot for a short and wonderfully scenic walk with gorgeous lake views. Don't forget your camera.
3. Hike the Gold Cord Lake Trail
Located near the Independence Mine State Park, this is an easy and fun 1.5 mile hike that is perfect for kids. Plus, there is some fantastic marmots that also use the trail.
4. Go wild blueberry picking
Bring your bucket because blueberries are scattered all around the park in summer.
5. Explore the Gold Mint Trail.
Older kids or experienced hiking families will enjoy this moderate 8 mile hike that ends with a beautiful and picturesque red hut run by the Alaska Mountaineering Club.
6. Extend the adventure by camping.
There are a variety of different spots to camp at Hatcher Pass, in addition to cabins for rent. More information on the areas can be found at http://www.alaska.org/detail/hatcher-pass.
Alaskan Mama and PNW Kids contributor, Bryenna (@breeleigh_mcc ) , recently explored Hatcher Pass with her kids and here are her notes on the adventure. Make sure to check out her Instagram page for more Alaskan adventures.
Pros: Tons of kid friendly trails Beautiful drive Small patches of blueberries for picking Can explore Independence Mine Camping areas Cons: Many areas are no ATV/no camp fires Food/Lodging limited and can be pricey (bring snacks) Some trails are not so kid friendly Road through Hatcher Pass only open during summer (dirt/gravel road)
Resources to Plan your Trip
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