“A steep ascent through the open ridges and valleys to Matanuska Peak.”
— Ella Embree
Features: Birding — Fall Colors — River/Creek — Wildflowers — Wildlife
Begin at the McRoberts Creek Trailhead and follow an access road until signs indicate the trail heading into the trees on the left. The trail is pretty well marked with plastic signs, and later cairns in the higher elevations. While the summit is quite captivating, the entire trail is beautiful and well worth admiring your surroundings at various points of your trip.
Due to some erosion in previous years, the trail has been rerouted to a slightly longer meander toward Lazy Mountain. This reroute eventually makes its way back to the original course. Here you'll find fireweed and ample blueberries if you time your visit to the right season.
Continue along the trail as it turns toward Matanuska Peak through a beautiful valley covered with low brush. The valley has a steady but slight grade that doesn't hinder progress. You'll eventually find a dilapidated picnic table that makes a great resting point before a small creek crossing.
Ahead, the climbing begins in earnest and the final mile to the top is very steep! Runners will encounter some loose gravel during the climb that can be discouraging when it moves beneath one's feet. Fortunately, it doesn't last too long and more stable lichened-covered boulders are soon reached.
Once you've conquered the demanding steeps, you're sure to enjoy basking in the views of craggy ridges and lush valleys that stretch far into the distance.