Hiking Around Sitka, Alaska

Sitka Features Some Of Alaskas Best Hiking Trails

No other town in Alaska has as many hiking trails as Sitka. Great mountain hikes, nature walks, urban trails, history paths – Sitka is for hikers and was featured as one of America’s best towns for running trails in a recent issue of “Canadian Runner” magazine.

Indian River Trail5 miles, Easy

Near town on good ter­rain, this trail is pop­u­lar with all ages for walks and trail runs. The trail fol­lows the Indi­an Riv­er through a val­ley to a nice water­fall. Along the river is great for bird watching as well as looking for deer and additional wildlife. In late sum­mer the riv­er is a major salmon run (no fish­ing allowed).

Mosquito Cove Trail • Easy

This beau­ti­ful trail is part of an exten­sive local sys­tem of trails and board­walks. It’s pop­u­lar with locals and state fer­ry trav­el­ers, since it can be linked via trail to the fer­ry ter­mi­nal, the For­est and Muskeg Trail, and the Estu­ary Life Trail.

Sitka Nat’l Historic Park Trails • 1 mile, Easy

Begins at the Sitka Nation­al Park Ser­vice Vis­i­tor Cen­ter, it travels through coastal for­est, along a salmon stream, with great views of the shore­ and moun­tains. It also passes totem poles and historic sites, like the 1804 Bat­tle of Sit­ka. It was the last battle with the Tlin­gits in Sit­ka ending with Russ­ian rule.

Cross Trail • 7 miles , Easy

Very close to town the Cross trail inter­sects Gavan Hill Trail one mile in as it goes through thick stands of trees. Some distance after that anoth­er trail forks off leading to Sit­ka High School. After the fork the trail follows an old log­ging road that comes out behind the high school base­ball field. The trail ends short­ly thereafter.

Old Sitka State Historic Site • length varies, Easy

This location has numer­ous hik­ing trails with fantastic inter­pre­tive signs. It is also a historic location being the site of the first Russ­ian set­tle­ment on Bara­nof Island.

Sitka Causeway Trail Distance • 1 mile, Easy

Fort Rousseau State Historical Park – Best to take a water taxi to the arch­i­pel­ago running out into Sit­ka Sound. It’s a rel­ic of decay­ing for­ti­fi­ca­tions built to defend Alas­ka from for­eign inva­sion dur­ing World War II. Dur­ing World War II, Sit­ka was the hub of mil­i­tary activ­i­ty in South­east Alas­ka, with a U.S. Naval Air Sta­tion

Halibut Point State Recreation Area • 1 mile, Easy

A great water­front location with cov­ered shel­ters. A favorite pass time at low tide is visiting Mag­ic Island and exploring the numerous tidal pools looking for sea crea­tures. A nice one-mile loop trail goes through the park passing an inter­est­ing mod­ern totem pole.

Forest & Muskeg Trail • Easy

This is one of the more scenic trails and great for hik­ers of all skill levels. Featuring inter­pre­tive trail markers keyed with a self-guid­ed brochure. Hike through exam­ples of the local for­est ecosys­tems. Learn about the Alaska ecolo­gies while hiking gen­tly slop­ing trails and board­walks. Access the trail by starting at Old Sit­ka State Park locat­ed just ¼ mile north of the Ferry Terminal.

The “Fortress of the Bear” is a bear rescue facility located on the outskirts of the town of Sitka and is open to the public.

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