Hope Point is a steep, 8.44-mile roundtrip hike in Hope that rewards you with amazing views of Turnagain Arm, Anchorage, Cook Inlet, and the Chugach Mountains.
This trail is rated moderate to difficult with its steep elevation gain but it’s definitely one of the best hikes in Hope. It’s best used from May to October and winter travel is not recommended due to avalanches.
In this post, I’m going to share how to hike Hope Point in Hope, Alaska. Hope Point Trail is #45 in the Southcentral Alaska 100 Hikes Challenge.
Hike Hope Point in Hope, Alaska
Traditional Land: Dena’ina (Visit Native-Land.ca to identify whose land you live, work, and play on.)
Distance: 8.44 miles roundtrip
Time: 4.5 hours
Elevation Gain: 3,450 feet
Difficulty: Moderate to Difficult
- Trekking poles may be useful
- Carry water
- Bring snacks
How to get to Hope Point from Anchorage
Hope Point is located 89 miles south of Anchorage, which is about a 2-hour drive.
- From Anchorage, head south on the Seward Highway
- Follow for 70 miles and turn right onto Hope Highway
- In 17.7 miles turn left where there is a trailhead sign
- Drive to the end of the road to find the parking lot
Hope Point Trailhead
On the first day of June, we headed to Hope for a day hike. The Hope Point Trail starts from the same parking lot as Gull Rock Trail. The parking lot is large and there’s a toilet available to use.
The trail starts next to the trail information area and takes you through the spruce and birch forest and quickly crosses over a creek before reaching the trail sign for Hope Point and Gull Rock.
New Trail vs Old Trail
As you take the trail towards Hope Point, you will follow the creek until you hit the start of the switchbacks.
You’ll also notice a trail that continues straight on. This is the old trail and it’s a more direct route to the summit, which means it’s also a lot steeper. If you don’t mind hiking straight up then you can definitely take this route.
The switchbacks are long and gradually gain elevation. Eventually, you will make it above the treeline to get your first views of Turnagain Arm and the town of Hope below.
As you continue to climb the mountain, the views continue to get better! You’ll also notice a lot of wildflowers once you reach the alpine meadows. I loved seeing the patches of forget-me-nots.
At Mile 3.2, you’ll reach a large cairn, which marks the end of the maintained trail. This is a good spot to stop for a snack.
After this point, the trail gets steeper and you will have to do a little bit of scrambling to reach the summit of Hope Point.
I definitely recommend continuing past the cairn because the views get even better. You’ll have to hike through a stretch of trees again before it opens up to the final climb up the ridge.
As we continued up the ridge and made the final ascent, the wind picked up and it got super cold. I was glad I packed extra layers, which is mandatory when hiking in Alaska.
When you reach the saddle, you’ll head right towards a trail that goes around the back side of Hope Point.
Just before the final climb, there was a very small patch of snow that we had to cross over. It was mostly hard-packed and felt safe to continue across.
The Hope Point summit has a survey mark so you will know you’ve reached the top. Unfortunately, the summit was socked in and we couldn’t see any views from the very top.
It was also a lot windier and we only stayed on the summit for a brief amount of time.
On the way down, the weather started to clear up and we were able to see views of peaks in the Kenai Mountains to the south.
The weather continued to clear up and we had some awesome views of Turnagain Arm and the Chugach Mountains.
Heading down also gives you a way better perspective for photographs. The views are epic and you don’t need to completely summit to see them.
Hope Point Trail is 8.44 miles roundtrip and it will take you 4.5 hours to complete the trail out and back.
This hike was difficult because of the steep elevation gain but the views are worth it and I felt absolutely rejuvenated afterwards.
This trail gives you opportunities to see grouse, bears, moose, and beluga whales. The only wildlife we saw were two bald eagles soaring above us.
Other Hikes in Hope
If you’re looking for more hikes in Hope, check out Gull Rock Trail, Resurrection Pass, and Palmer Lakes.
Top 10 Things To Do In Hope Alaska
Backpacking Resurrection Pass Trail in Alaska
Southcentral Alaska 100 Hikes Challenge
What to Wear Hiking in Alaska (Summer)
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Do you have any questions on hiking Hope Point in Alaska? Let me know in the comments.