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Girdwood to Anchorage

In summer, adventurers’ hearts turn to wilderness traverses. Many are through Alaska’s most remote landscapes: The Brooks Range, Wrangells, or Alaska Range. Closer to home, backpackers can walk past glaciers, over high passes, through endless tundra, and past dozens of tarns--and that’s just on a weekend hike from Girdwood to Anchorage.
No official trails connect the two communities, but topographic maps suggest several potential routes that start at Crow Pass and end at Glen Alps. From Crow Pass, tundra and scree lead up to Steamroller or Paradise Pass. From Steamroller, it is a fairly short walk past the Archangel Lakes to the upper North Fork Ship Creek Valley. Paradise leads directly into Ship Creek. From the massive moraine piles and rock glaciers above Grizzly Bear Lake, long views down valley lead back toward town. One could walk down the North Fork of Ship Creek, then hang a left at the South Fork and walk up toward Ship Lake Pass, but less brushy routes cross passes between …

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