“This is a stunning backcountry trail with glacial rivers and panoramic mountains.
— Austin Harrison
Birding · Lake · River/Creek · Views · Wildlife
You may want to arrange either a ride or a second car at the end of this trail (on Snug Harbor Road) given the trail's extensive length.
This beautiful trail travels through the remote valley south of Cooper Mountain on the Kenai Peninsula. Along the way, the trail passes both Lower and Upper Russian Lake while meandering along the Russian River. This is Alaska after all, so expect panoramic views of the surrounding mountains and scenic overlooks of the river.
Starting from Russian River Campground, the trail heads south through the forest on a somewhat rocky tread to reach Lower Russian Lake. While the terrain throughout this section does provide slight changes in grade, it's pretty flat overall as you head through the valley.
After passing the junction with the trail to Barber Cabin, the trail continues to hug the east side of the valley as it continues south toward Aspen Flats Cabin. Once here, be sure to head down the access trail and check it out!
When you're ready to continue on, the trail makes a turn toward the east to follow the northern side of the valley on it's way to yet another cabin at Upper Russian Lake. While at this one, be sure to check out the gorgeous views of both the lake and your surrounding mountains.
Past the cabin, the trail continues east to reach a junction with the Resurrection River Trail. Stay left at the junction to remain on this trail. Eventually, the trail passes more glacial ponds before reaching the south side of Cooper Lake. From here, it's only a short distance to the trail's end in a junction with Snug Harbor Road.
Flora & Fauna
Bears are always a possibility in this area, so carry bear spray and know how to use it.