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Hiking Alaska: A Guide to Alaska's Greatest Hiking Adventures
by Mollie Foster (Falcon Guides)
© 2017 Mollie Foster/Falcon Guides. All Rights Reserved.
Excellent hike with two water crossings (very cold), incredible views of glaciers and waterfalls, and several great campsites en route. Wildlife viewing was limited, but signs were abundant (especially bear). Be prepared for a swift current when you cross Eagle River, and bring sturdy water shoes for the crossing - well worth the extra weight!
I had a great time hiking this trail from Eagle River to Girdwood. We camped about 1 hour before the first river crossing to make sure we crossed in the early afternoon when the sun was out and it was warm. The two river crossing are only minutes from each other and the first one is short and shallow, the 2nd one about 70 yards wide and deep. Cross in the early morning if you can when the glacier hasn't had a chance to melt all day yet. Only saw one bear and it left camp quickly. A great hike to do when the Girdwood Forest Fair is going on (over the 4th of July). We got to Girdwood, took showers and headed for the fair. I liked going Eagle River to Gwood because the beautiful view and summit is at the very end. If you do it the other way around, you hit the most beautiful part of the hike in the first 2 hours and then it's all lower elevation hiking for the next day. This way, we had something major to look forward to. At the beginning of July, the river was up to my upper thigh (I'm 5'2") and it was as cold as they say. Very numbing. I wore my Solemon trail running shoes (what I wore for the whole hike) and they worked great. Dried out in a few hours. Do not waste your time w/flip flops as I saw some people doing. They will float away for sure. Plenty of fresh water to drink along the trail, filter it if you wish. We saw about 100 other hikers, day runners and such so don't expect to be completely alone out there.
My comments are that I have not been able to get the trail report. I get emails that advise me that the report was not available.
So I guess Worst is my rating.
Amazing trail, we spent an extra day camped at the pass allowing us to make a few day trip summit runs. The views were all breathtaking, getting from the trailhead to the pass is quite a steep climb...just be prepared (2600 ft. in 4 miles)
The trail is dangerous in many areas and has been written up as that way in news paper articles. Bears are a problem along the trail as evidenced again this year by a bear that could not be chased off by 9 people from belgium. The glacier water is extremely cold and the river height changes frequently. The place of crossing is often filled with holes and washed out as are many of the bridges. A great hike..a definite alaskan adventure. Not for the novice or feint hearted.
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