5 Best Hikes in Hope, Alaska

Looking for the best hikes in Hope, Alaska? From alpine lakes to 360-degree views, Hope has plenty of incredible hiking trails.

Hope, Alaska was one of the original gold rush towns formed in 1889. Today, Hope has a few maintained hiking trails and access to one of the best backpacking trails in Alaska. Hope is also just a fun place to camp and enjoy summertime in Alaska.

In this post, I’m going to share the best hikes in Hope, Alaska, and directions on how to get to each hiking trail. You’ll also find my favorite places to eat in Hope at the end of this post.

How to get to Hope from Anchorage:

Hope is located 88 miles south of Anchorage. It usually takes around 1 hour and 40 minutes to drive there from Anchorage. Follow the Seward Highway south and turn right onto Hope Hwy.

5 Best Hikes in Hope, Alaska


1. Resurrection Pass Trail

Distance: 39 miles one-way
Time: Multi-day
Elevation Gain: 2,200 feet
Difficulty: Moderate

Resurrection Pass is one of the best multi-day backpacking trails in Alaska. The trail is 39 miles in length and takes you through the Kenai Mountains. The trail offers incredible scenery with everything from lakes and waterfalls to wildflowers and plenty of wildlife.

You can either hike the trail southbound from Hope to Cooper Landing or northbound from Cooper Landing to Hope. I prefer to hike the trail northbound because you can reach the highest elevation point early on and enjoy a gradual downhill into Hope.

I recommend planning at least three days if you’re hiking this trail. There are many backcountry campsites and public use state cabins to stay in along the way.

Read the full guide: Backpacking Resurrection Pass Trail in Alaska

How to get to Resurrection Pass Trail North From Anchorage:

Follow the Seward Highway south until you reach the Hope Highway. Turn Right onto Hope Highway. Follow for 16 miles and turn left onto Palmer Creek Road/Resurrection Creek Road. Turn right onto Resurrection Creek Road. Stay on Resurrection Creek Road and you will see the Resurrection Pass Trail North parking lot on your right.

Best Hikes in Hope Alaska Resurrection Pass Trail North
Resurrection Pass Trail

2. Hope Point

Distance: 7.5 to 9 miles roundtrip
Time: 4 hours
Elevation Gain: 3,600 feet
Difficulty: Moderate

A steep hike up Hope Point on a clear day will reward you with sweeping vistas of Turnagain Arm, Hope Valley, Anchorage, Denali and beyond.

You have two options when hiking this trail, you can take a direct route or follow the switchbacks. If you follow the switchbacks you will notice your mileage is more than what a lot of other sites may say. Take your time over loose rock and as you scramble to reach the summit of Hope Point.

This trail is best hiked from May to October as avalanche hazards are present during the wintertime. Make sure to carry enough water for you and your pets.

How to get to the Hope Point Trail From Anchorage:

Follow the Seward Highway south until you reach the Hope Highway. Turn Right onto Hope Highway. Follow for 17.7 miles and turn left 500 feet before Porcupine Campground to reach Hope Point Trail.

Read more: What to wear hiking in Alaska

3. Palmer Lakes / Twin Lakes

Distance: 3 miles roundtrip
Time: 1.5 hours
Elevation Gain: 2,070 feet
Difficulty: Easy

The trail to Palmer Lakes or Twin Lakes in Hope follows an old road before a steep climb to reach two stunning blue alpine lakes. The hike is located near an old mining area and remnants can still be seen along the trail.

The trail follows switchbacks to the lakes and you’ll pass a beautiful waterfall along the way. The higher lake usually has icebergs floating on it throughout the summer.

I highly recommend exploring this area of Hope. The drive through the valley is beautiful and there are ton of places to camp overnight.

This road is usually closed during winter and a 4×4 vehicle is recommended but we managed to make it to the end of the road in a small car.

How to get to Palmer Lakes/ Twin Lakes Trail From Anchorage:

Follow the Seward Highway south until you reach the Hope Highway. Turn Right onto Hope Highway. Follow for 16 miles and turn left onto Palmer Creek Road/Resurrection Creek Road. Continue on Palmer Creek Road for 12.3 miles until you reach the end of the road and a small parking area.

Hiking Palmer Creek Twin Lakes Alaska
On the ridge looking towards Palmer Lakes / Twin Lakes Trail

4. Palmer Creek Ridge

Distance: As far as you want to go
Elevation Gain: 2,000+ feet
Difficulty: Moderate

While you’re driving along Palmer Creek Road, you will notice the inviting ridgeline that surrounds you. If you want to further explore the Palmer Creek Valley then hike along Palmer Creek Ridge.

One of the easiest ways to get up to the ridge is by following the old vehicle track to Hirshey Mine. You can find this track at the beginning of the Palmer Lakes / Twin Lakes Trail. Just take the first left through the brush after you cross the first small creek crossing.

Once you make it to the top of the ridge, you can see another set of alpine lakes at the head of Alder Creek on the other side of the ridge.

The ridge is full of many unnamed peaks and views of hidden tarns and old mine ruins from Downey Mine, Hirshey Mine, Swetman Mill, and Lucky Strike Mine. Spend the day exploring as much of the ridge as you want.

How to get to Palmer Creek Ridge From Anchorage:

Follow the Seward Highway south until you reach the Hope Highway. Turn Right onto Hope Highway. Follow for 16 miles and turn left onto Palmer Creek Road/Resurrection Creek Road. Continue on Palmer Creek Road for 12.3 miles until you reach the end of the road and a small parking area.

Read more: 5 Glacier Hikes Near Anchorage

5. Gull Rock

Distance: 11 miles roundtrip
Time: 5 hours
Elevation Gain: 1,200 feet
Difficulty: Easy

Gull Rock Trail parallels Turnagain Arm until you reach a rocky outcrop. The trail starts within Porcupine Campground in Hope and takes you on an easy walk in and out of the forest.

This is an easy hike with little elevation gain. It makes a great day hike if you’re hanging out in Hope but I suggest planning it as an overnight. There are a few primitive backcountry campsites at Gull Rock and it’s a beautiful sight to wake up to. You can also see beluga whales in this area.

One of my least favorite things about this hike is that it can be super overgrown making it unappealing to continue on. It really just depends on the season.

Make sure not venture onto the tidal flats. The glacial mud is like quicksand and you don’t want to get trapped in it.

How to get to Gull Rock Trail From Anchorage:

Follow the Seward Highway south until you reach the Hope Highway. Turn Right onto Hope Highway. Follow all the way to Porcupine Campground and you will find the Gull Rock Trail.

Gull Rock Trail Hope Alaska Sunset Sleeping Lady Turnagain Arm
View of Sleeping Lady from Gull Rock during Sunset

Where to Eat in Hope, Alaska

  • Food on Second – Really good sandwiches.
  • Seaview Cafe & Bar – Try their halibut and chips then jam out to music from the deck.
  • Creekbend Cafe – Breakfast made for hangovers. Beer. Indoor and outdoor seating.
  • Grounds For Hope Espresso – Satisfy your coffee needs. Also, try a breakfast burrito.. get ’em early.
  • Dirty Skillet – Hearty, heaping, home-cooked foods.

YouTube Video: Overnight Backpacking Trip in Alaska Gone Wrong


Read More

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5 Best Hikes in Girdwood

5 Glacier Hikes Near Anchorage

Alaska Travel Guide


Pin For Later

Here are the Best Hikes in Hope Alaska. If you plan on hiking in Alaska then check out these awesome hikes in Alaska with waterfalls, alpine lakes, amazing views of Denali and one of the best multi-day hiking trails in Alaska.

Do you have any questions about these awesome hikes in Hope? Leave them in comments.

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