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20 Dog-Friendly Hiking Trails in Alaska You Can Visit in 2024

Kristin Hitchcock

By Kristin Hitchcock

Dog owner hiking trailing

20 Dog-Friendly Hiking Trails in Alaska You Can Visit

Alaska is home to hundreds of hiking trails. These trails range from short nature walks to practically climbing mountains. In many cases, your dog is welcome to come with you. While dogs are often required to be leashed, they may be allowed off-leash in some areas.

While it’d be impossible to list all the potential hiking trails in Alaska simply due to the sheer size of the state, we have listed 20 of our favorites below.

Divider-Dog Paw and Bone- New

The 20 Dog-Friendly Hiking Trails in Alaska

1. Portage Pass Trail

Address: Portage Pass Trail, Whittier, AK 99693
Open Times: 24 hours
Cost: Free
Off-leash allowed?: No
  • 4.4-mile trail that takes almost 3 hours to complete on average
  • Very popular trail for backpacking and camping, so you’ll probably encounter other people
  • Moderately challenging
  • Offers stunning views of Portage Glacier and Portage Lake
  • Rocky and a bit steep on the first mile

2. Bodenburg Butte via West Butte Trail

Address: Mothershead Ln, Palmer, AK 99645
Open Times: Sunrise to sunset
Cost: Free
Off-leash allowed?: No
  • 2.3-mile trail that takes you out and back
  • Moderately challenging trail
  • Takes about an hour and a half to complete
  • Very popular hike, so expect to see others

3. Reed Lakes Trail

Address: Palmer, AK 99645
Open Times: Sunrise to sunset
Cost: Free
Off-leash allowed?: No
  • Very long trail at 8.7 miles out-and-back
  • Considered a challenging trail, so be prepared
  • Despite being difficult, it is rather popular
  • First 2 miles are well-maintained, but then turns into a rugged trail

4. Virgin Creek Falls

Address: 1231-1101 Timberline Dr, Girdwood, AK 99587
Open Times: Sunrise to sunset
Cost: Free
Off-leash allowed?: No
  • A fairly short trail at only half a mile
  • Only takes about 30 minutes to complete, though it is somewhat challenging
  • Decently popular hiking trail
  • Serious elevation over a short period
  • Not an official trailhead

5. South Fork Falls

Address: 21711 Ken Logan Cir, Eagle River, AK 99577
Open Times: Sunrise to sunset
Cost: Parking pass required
Off-leash allowed?: No
  • 1.3-mile out-and-back trail
  • Easy route, taking about 30 minutes to complete
  • Very popular area for hiking, as it is quite easy
  • Runs through private property, where staying on the path is essential

6. West Glacier Trail

Address: Skaters Cabin Rd, Juneau, AK 99801
Open Times: 24 hours
Cost: Free
Off-leash allowed?: No
  • 4-mile out-and-back trail
  • Moderately challenging, taking just under 2 hours to complete
  • Popular area for birding

7. Lower Dewey Lake Trail

Address: Address: Skagway, AK 99840
Open Times: Sunrise to sunset
Cost: Free
Off-leash allowed?: No
  • Popular cross-country skiing trail that can also be hiked
  • 3-mile loop trail
  • Wonderful views of the nearby town and harbor
  • Very steep
  • Many picnic tables on the path

8. Mount Roberts Trail

Address: Juneau, AK 99801
Open Times: Sunrise to sunset
Cost: Free
Off-leash allowed?: No
  • Very difficult 7.6-mile trail
  • Takes practically all day to complete, so be prepared
  • Suggested for summer hiking only

9. East Glacier Loop Trail

Address: Alaska 99664
Open Times: 24 hours
Cost: Free
Off-leash allowed?: No
  • 3.1-mile loop trail that takes about 2 hours to complete
  • Quieter trail that is good for some solitude
  • Provides an excellent view of the Mendenhall Glacier

10. Perseverance Trail

Address: Perseverance Trail, Juneau, AK 99801
Open Times: 24 hours
Cost: Free
Off-leash allowed?: No
  • 4.6-mile trail that’s considered moderately challenging
  • Popular for hiking and running
  • Decent elevation gain, so it’s best for experienced hikers

11. Mount Gordon Lyons Trail

Address: Anchorage, AK 99505
Open Times: Sunrise to sunset
Cost: $5 parking pass required
Off-leash allowed?: No
  • Longer trail that takes about 2.5 hours to complete
  • Extremely popular for hiking and skiing
  • Quite easy for most people, despite being long
  • Provides a good view of the valley and spring-fed creek
  • Next to a military installation; do not trespass

12. Iditarod Trail to Rapid’s Yurt

Address: Seward, AK 99664
Open Times: Sunrise to sunset
Cost: Free
Off-leash allowed?: No
  • Easier long trail with only 442 ft of elevation gain
  • Very popular for those looking for a more laidback hike
  • Closed seasonally for weather conditions
  • Utilized for skiing in the winter

13. Deer Mountain Trail

Address: Ketchikan, AK 99901
Open Times: Sunrise to sunset
Cost: Free
Off-leash allowed?: No
  • Long, challenging route for experienced hikers only
  • Contains gravel sections, wooden bridges, and natural rock sections
  • Starts with a boardwalk and then climbs up to alpine
  • Loose rocks may pose a safety concern
  • Stay on the trail, as there are several cliff areas

14. Hope Point

Address: Hope, AK 99605
Open Times: Sunrise to sunset
Cost: Free
Off-leash allowed?: No
  • Very difficult 7.5-mile trail
  • Popular trail, but its length provides some solitude
  • Very well groomed
  • Switchbacks prevent the climb from being too bad

15. Near Point via Stuckagain Heights

Address: Anchorage, AK
Open Times: Sunrise to sunset
Cost: Free
Off-leash allowed?: No
  • Easier trail at 3.3 miles, though with a nearly 2,000 ft elevation gain
  • Plan to take 3 hours to complete
  • Open year-round
  • No trail sign or parking at the trailhead

16. Goldbelt Tram to Gastineau Peak

Address: 490 S Franklin St, Juneau, AK 99801
Open Times: Varies depending on the time of year
Cost: Free
Off-leash allowed?: No
  • Almost 4-mile trail that takes over 3 hours to complete
  • Not as popular as others on this list
  • Overgrown path may not be the easiest to travel
  • Stunning views

17. Ptarmigan Lake Trail

Address: 18845 Old Glenn Hwy, Chugiak, AK 99567
Open Times: 24 hours
Cost: Free
Off-leash allowed?: No
  • 6.8-mile trail with a slight elevation gain
  • Considered an easier, longer route
  • Not as popular as some other areas

18. Caines Head Trail

https://www.instagram.com/p/CSW6R8IH3x7/

Address: Tonsina Creek Rd, Seward, AK 99664
Open Times: Sunrise to sunset
Cost: Free
Off-leash allowed?: No
  • Very long trail at nearly 14.5 miles
  • Takes over 7 hours to complete
  • Hard trail with a steep elevation gain; only for experienced hikers
  • Well-maintained trail
  • Be sure to time your trip with the tides, as part of the hike is on the beach

19. Upper Dewey Lake Trail

Address: Skagway, AK 99840
Open Times: Sunrise to sunset
Cost: Free
Off-leash allowed?: No
  • Almost exactly 5 miles
  • Requires nearly 5 hours to complete, so plan appropriately
  • Very steep incline with lots of walks
  • Well-marked trail the whole way
  • Follows a creek for much of the way

20. Totem Trail

Address: Sitka National Historical Park, 103 Monastery St, Sitka, AK 99835
Open Times: 9 AM–5 PM
Cost: Free
Off-leash allowed?: No
  • Very short trail at less than a mile
  • Very easy route that should take less than 30 minutes to complete
  • Showcases several totem poles
  • Part of the world’s largest temperate rainforest
  • Trail surface is crushed gravel

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Conclusion

There are many trails spread throughout Alaska that you can take your dog on. These range from very short walks on paved surfaces to all-day hikes up steep mountains. There is something for just about everyone at any skill level. Be sure to always check for extreme weather, as many of these trails are up steeper elevations and may be particularly impacted by snow and ice.

As always, be safe and take it slow. Be sure your dog is just as prepared as you are, too. If your dog isn’t used to hiking, be sure to take them on shorter hikes before trying one that is several miles long.

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Featured Image Credit to: Zivica Kerkez, Shutterstock

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