Hiking Alaska: A Guide to Alaska's Greatest Hiking Adventures
by Mollie Foster (Falcon Guides)
© 2017 Mollie Foster/Falcon Guides. All Rights Reserved.
Just outside of Anchorage Alaska, this trail starts at the crowded Glen Alps parking lot, but you will soon find yourself alone.
You will start out on the crowded, wide, well traveled multi-use trail that leads to the crowded Powerline Pass trail. After a few hundred yards on the Powerline Pass trail, turn left on the marked Williwaw Lakes trail. Down the hill, across the bridge then start slogging through the mud. At this point, most hikers aim for the steep climb up to Little O'Malley peak. The Williwaw Lakes loop trail will encounter this steep up or down depending on which direction you choose.
After summiting the steep to Little O'Malley peak, few go further. But, keep going, up the gentle grade of the “Ballfield” to the base of O’Malley Peak, where the view of Black Lake and Williwaw Lakes unfolds.
To continue with the loop, go down the scree slope to Black Lake. This could be an interesting descent - down the scree. I’ve never done it, I’ve only gone the opposite direction of the loop - up the scree. Explore the Williwaw lakes then follow the trail down the Middle Fork Campbell Creek valley (Nunaka Valley?). Enjoy the bands of sheep that frequent the slope of Wolverine Peak on your right.
At the end of the valley, there is a trail intersection. Go left and fight the mud to return to the base of Little O’Malley peak, where you chose to go up the steep earlier in the day.
Across the bridge and back up the hill to the Glen Alps parking lot.
This is a beautiful day hike near Anchorage. Be prepared to encounter mud and to steeps. But the views are worth it!
Good hike. THe 800 ft elevation gain is deceiving because the trail is rolling. There are never any super steep parts but we got a lot more exercise than we thought we would. Still easy. We saw several (seven) moose some right up on the trail which was not just a little bit scary. There was also evidence of bear on the trail but no animal to be seen. Lots of different birds. The water babbles along the trail the whole way and the lakes are stunning - like falling class on a calm day. I recommend this trail.
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