Wanderlust Wednesday: Winner Creek Trail in Girdwood, Alaska

Winner Creek Trail

Girdwood, Alaska

June 2014

wanderlust wed - Copy

For my college graduation gift, my family and I traveled to the last frontier…Alaska! Words can’t even begin to describe the stunning and magnificent grandeur that state possesses. For the next few Wanderlust Wednesday posts, I thought I’d spotlight some of the hiking my dad and I did over the trip. We went on three major hikes: Winner Creek trail in Girdwood, Mount Healy in Denali National Park, and Cathedral Mountain also in Denali.

So without further ado, I give you the first hiking recap…Winner Creek trail! 🙂

Girdwood is a town in Alaska located about 50 minutes outside of Anchorage inside Chugach State Park. After driving around, we stopped at a lodge called the Alyeska Resort to explore. To our surprise, a lot of day hiking trails started at the resort. My dad and I planned to do an easy/warmup hike that day, but didn’t want to ditch my mom in some random Bigfoot cave or port-a-potty, so it worked out perfectly–she got to relax by the fireplace while we ventured out into the rainy/misty woods. 🙂

1-trails 0-trail map

A little info about the Winner Creek trail:

  • Roughly 5.5 miles
  • Easy, level terrain (perfect for a warm-up hike)
  • Lots of dense forest, gorges, and some wooden bridges
  • Boasts a hand tram at the end of the trail that takes you out over the rushing water!

I was a little hesitant to go hiking since it was raining pretty hard when we arrived at the resort, but my dad and I had rain gear and I wasn’t going to let it interfere with vacation fun! The drizzle let up a little and the trees helped block most of the moisture, so it turned out to be really pleasant.

2-trailhead 3-creek 4-woods 5-misty view

The path was extremely well-groomed–wooden steps and walkways over mud-prone regions, steps created from tree roots–very easy to follow.

The first bridge we came to spanned a rushing creek. It was so serene and beautiful–my eyes were overwhelemed with all of the greenery, especially coming from brown, dead-grass-riddled Texas haha

6-bridge one 7-bridge view 8-foliage

We ventured on, saw a few squirrels dart across the path, and eventually saw the hand tram sign.

9-tram sign 10-bridge two

After walking another 1/2 mile or so, we made it to the wicked cool hand tram!! 😀 I hopped in the cage first and pulled myself out over the water. Standing at the station, I thought I would be nervous when I got out over the water in such a rickety, sketch cage, but it wasn’t creepy at all. The view was spectacular and the rushing water drowned out all other noise. My dad and I really enjoyed it–talk about a unique hiking destination!

11-hand tram 12-hand tram 13-hand tram 14-hand tram 15-hand tram 16-Hand Tram View

The rain started to come down hard again while we walked back, but the cloudy, overcast sky made for the perfect spooky backdrop amidst the mountains. 🙂

17-misty mountains

Even though it wasn’t a strenuous hike and we didn’t get to see Bigfoot, it sure was a unique, gorgeous trail. So, if you’re in the Chugach area and are itching for a scenic hike, this is definitely one I’d recommend! 🙂




  1. Pingback: Wanderlust Wednesday: Cathedral Mountain, Denali National Park, AK | The Globetrotting Guppy

  2. Pingback: Wanderlust Wednesday: Mount Healy, Denali National Park, AK | The Globetrotting Guppy

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