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Matanuska Peak Trail is a 9.9 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Palmer, Alaska that offers the chance to see wildlife and is rated as difficult. The trail is primarily used for hiking, nature trips, and bird watching and is best used from April until September. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

Length 9.9 mi Elevation gain 5,580 ft Route type Out & Back
Dogs on leash Hiking Nature trips Bird watching Forest Views Wildlife Snow
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Reviews (129)
Photos (174)
Recordings (99)
Completed (198)
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Megan Woida
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarOctober 11, 2020
HikingGreat!IcyOff trailRocky

Trail was very easy to follow and find until the last rocky part of the summit trip. We didn’t quite make it up to the summit, but stopped about 900 feet before, and the views were still outstanding. The hike is rated as difficult for a reason. Come prepared!

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Brady Miller
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarSeptember 26, 2020

Went up last weekend. It took us 11 hrs, but we also went rappelling in the crevasse before the final ascent. There was some snow about 4000ft elevation and made it slightly difficult to climb Boulder City. We did not have any YakTrax, but still managed to make it up with no issues.

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charles Treinen
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSeptember 22, 2020
Hiking

Still good blueberries

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Alexandra Ellis
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSeptember 14, 2020
HikingGreat!RockySnow

Incredible hike with a lot to see. The hike took our group about 9 hours with about 1 hour worth of breaks. It was cold in the morning but by mid day very warm. Fall colors really popped. Two water sources for fill up with filter: little creek about 2.5 miles up and then a higher access point at about 4 miles before final assent. Beautiful and spacious views at the top- a dreamy place to sit for a while. Just a little bit of snow on the boulders near the summit. Great Adventure!

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Hannah Campbell
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSeptember 12, 2020
HikingBugs

Great views, but tough on the legs! So so steep, not sure if it was harder going down or up. We almost made it to the summit (4.3mi in, a little less than a mile to summit) but decided to head back so we’d have enough light to hike out. We had a group of 6 (ages ranging from 20s-60s), we took it easy and did it in almost 8 hours, 5 hours in, almost 3 hours out. A LOT of black flies/gnats on the trail, and we also saw a wolf and eagle on our way back which was pretty cool! Picnic table is still up there but broken in pieces, still made a good rest stop. Overall great hike, hoping to make it to the summit next time.

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Joshua Rockey
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSeptember 10, 2020
Hiking

Good

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Jonathan Cline
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSeptember 4, 2020
HikingGreat!Over grown

The scenery is spectacular most of the way. The trail has a lot of overgrown areas in the beginning, so expect to get wet when precipitation has been falling, or dress appropriately to stay dry. It was raining when we started, with rain followed by snow periodically as we neared the summit. The climb is not significantly exposed (we had expected more risk than we encountered given what it looks like from a distance). There is a short section of scree on the upper portion, but as you get closer to the summit, it becomes much more solid. There was a light dusting of snow, so will get more difficult as that builds up, but was easy to avoid slick areas. The wet black lichen posed more of a challenge than the snow did for us, but was easily overcome by paying attention. We took it pretty easy, it took us 4:15 to summit. I am 50 and found it very straight forward. I would expect the average person to be sore for a couple days after this one. Overall experience was excellent. I highly recommend this climb.

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Lisha Antiqua
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 30, 2020
Hiking

Loved All trails!! We tend to get off trail at times. And this time All Trails saved us!! Whoo we went up late thinking 7 hours up and back. got lost and that made it 9 hours. For us 12 miles but honestly I’d say about 9 or 10.

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Christopher Coleman-Denomie Jr
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 28, 2020
Hiking

difficult hike with some beautiful views. take your time on the boulders

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Christopher D Bena
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 28, 2020
Hiking

First two miles steady up through the trees. Next three pretty flat above the tree line. Last mile straight up through scree and a bolder field. Lots of yummy blueberries on the way! Excellent views from the top! 11 miles round trip. 5 hours up, 3 hours down.

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Patricia Lunt
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 23, 2020
Hiking
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Jason Opheim
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 15, 2020
Hiking

Instantly one of my favs. Great hike good trail with spectacular scenery. Can be windy and colder up top so be prepared.

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Christina Colvin
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJuly 27, 2020
Hiking

Challenging hike but so beautiful!! Clouds came in at the top, which meant no views, but it was still worth it! Small note - we took the trail to the left and ended up going 7 miles to the top according to all our gps/watches. It read “Matanuska Peak Trail” so not sure how we are the only ones that missed the fact that the trail going straight is 1.5 miles shorter! Took us 4.5 hours to the top. We took the other trail on the way back to save time...a more overgrown trail but worth it to save the legs!

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Rod Worl
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJuly 21, 2020
Hiking

My wife and I hiked this on our 25th Anniversary! Crazy scary view from the top. We thought this would be easier than Pioneer Peak which has about 1,000 foot higher elevation gain but it wasn't easier. It was that last half mile or more of very steep boulder field climbing took us about an hour. We were climbing with hand and feet at this point. The boulder field was dangerous because easy to stray off the trail. The biggest hint of staying on trail is look for the boulders with the black lichen worn off. There are lots of loose big boulders that could easily cause serious injuries. We kept distance between us in case one of us caused a small boulder avalanche. We almost turned around as we are not young at 61 and 52 years old. We did make it to the top 3 hours 35 minutes and round trip 6 hours 25 minutes. If you go by the footage marker near the top this was closer to 5.5 mile trip to the top and 11 mile round trip. So not sure what is the correct distance. We both agreed this was our hardest hike thus far but we loved it!

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Mae Grundman
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJuly 20, 2020
HikingNo shadeScramble

Hiked yesterday Matanuska Peak, very steep and very difficult. One of the toughest I hiked very intense. Very easy the 4 miles and then a killer 1 mile to go on the peak. Lot of boulders...but at the end it’s all worth it. We don’t get see much view because it’s too cloudy but above the clouds are pretty awesome. I fucking love it out here 7/18/20 10miles 5,580 feet

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Gabriel Holohan
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJuly 17, 2020
Hiking

Did this solo yesterday and it absolutely destroyed me. Beautiful views up top but it’s quite the scramble to reach the peak. Took around 8-9 hours. Great hike but it is definitely a workout I’m surprised my legs didn’t give out towards the end lol

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Ethan Kuzina
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarJuly 16, 2020
HikingBugsRocky

The trail started fairly steep and after the first mile and a half gradually leveled out further back in the valley. Above tree line the views are great and the trail is easy going. About a mile before the top, the trail transforms into a semi-switch back ascent. The climb feels very long. The trail eventually disappears and large boulders are the new trail. We found that the top had lots of black bugs and decided to sit sub-summit. The views were great, and the legs were dead by the top, which made for a long venture back to the parking lot.

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Eric Fjelstad
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarJuly 11, 2020
Running

I echo earlier reports on safety. This is a GREAT climb but the last 1/3 mile mile can be dangerous. I wouldn’t do it alone unless you are really prepared to spend a night on the mountain. It’s remote and you can’t expect to see anyone. Have all the safety gear including a Sat device. I had 70 degrees going up. Just beautiful. But the weather turned quickly nearly the top. Rain. Temps probably somewhere in the 40s. The much-mentioned boulders with black lichens were fine coming up but treacherous coming down. I had 2 minor falls, and at one point my ankle slipped and got a super bruise between 2 rocks. I was prepared for all of this, having been up it before. I had lots of gear. But still, I’m not sure I’d do it again alone when wet or socked in. Better plan would be to stop short of the boulder field 1/3 mile from top.

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Jennette Cooney
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJuly 7, 2020

Just finished climbing my way up to the peak. I was about a half mile shy of the actual peak because the fog was too thick to see anything up ahead. Wish I could have seen the views down below. I did see a ptarmagin with 5 chicks on my way down. Definitely a hike I'd want to do again!

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Elizabeth Moreno
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarJuly 3, 2020
HikingRocky
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Joy Murphy
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJune 18, 2020
Muddy

Hiked up Matanuska and cut over to Lazy Mountain. Pouring rain but still a blast!

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Serena MaryJean
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJune 13, 2020
HikingBugsRockyScramble

Really fun hike! Easy first 4 miles and then a killer last mile of ascent. Beautiful view at the top, worth the hike. Great conditions no mud or snow. Beautiful hike! I would recommend staying hydrated if it’s sunny.

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