Penguin Peak

Anchorage, Alaska

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1 Review
4 out of 5
It is impossible to drive along the Seward Highway and not notice Penguin Peak, the hulking mountain dominating Turnagain Arm west of Girdwood. It frustrates motorists with highway-closing avalanches in the winter, and slows traffic in the summer when tourists stop to watch Dall sheep prance across its rocky cliffs. But relatively few people know Penguin Peak for the gentle route up its western slopes and the sweeping views over Turnagain Arm from its upper ridge. Once at this high outpost you’ll quickly forget about the traffic jams far below.
50 Hikes in Alaska's Chugach State Park

DESCRIPTION FROM:

50 Hikes in Alaska's Chugach State Park

by Shane Shepherd & Owen Wozniak (The Mountaineers Books)

It is impossible to drive along the Seward Highway and not notice Penguin Peak, the hulking mountain dominating Turnagain Arm west of Girdwood. It frustrates motorists with highway-closing avalanches in the winter, and slows traffic in the summer when tourists stop to watch Dall sheep prance across its rocky cliffs.

But relatively few people know Penguin Peak for the gentle route up its western slopes and the sweeping views over Turnagain Arm from its upper ridge. Once at this high outpost you’ll quickly forget about the traffic jams far below.

©  Shane Shepherd & Owen Wozniak/The Mountaineers Books. All Rights Reserved.

Activity Type: Hiking
Nearby City: Anchorage
Distance: 6
Elevation Gain: 4,200 feet
Trail Type: Out-and-back
Skill Level: Moderate
Duration: 4 to 6 hours
Season: Best in the summer months
Local Contacts: Chugach State Park
Local Maps: USGS Seward D-7
Driving Directions: Directions to Penguin Peak

Recent Trail Reviews

7/29/2010
0

The trail is marked by a wooden post ("Penguin Peak") so it's impossible to miss. The trail is well-defined all the way to the microwave (radio) tower mentioned in the guide. This is not really a "moderate" hike, however; it is a strenuous and steep uphill grind until you get to the ridge. Some people like this kind of trail because you get to the scenic points very quickly (3200 foot elevation gain in about 1.5 miles), but others will find it to be exhausting. Either way, you can't possibly get lost and there's no bushwacking. If it has rained in the last few hours, this trail may be muddy and slippery. We tried it on a day when it had been cloudy all day after several weeks of rain, and it was mostly dry all the way to the top. The views are terrific.



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May 2018