Pets allowed
Allowed
Elevation Gain
1,900.00 ft (579.12 m)
Trail type
There-and-back
Distance
5.20 mi (8.37 km)
Please respect the outdoors by practicing Leave No Trace. Learn more about how to apply the principles of Leave No Trace on your next outdoor adventure here.

The Twin Peaks are two craggy summits above Eklutna Lake, clearly visible from the Knik River valley on the north side of the range. This trail comes up from the south side, reaching an alpine bowl with a view up to both peaks. Along the way is a panorama over the lake and glaciated peaks of the Chugach. Two wooden benches mark the two major overlooks along the trail, and either makes a good turnaround point for a rewarding hike.

Beginning from Eklutna Lake, the trail heads steeply up the wooded mountain slope, through a hallway of birch and spruce, with dense understory and wildflowers spilling over the fringes. It’s actually an old roadbed, so the path is wide and relatively smooth despite the incline. At one point you may notice a wrecked auto, left to rust in the woods below the trail. 

The forest setting goes uninterrupted until just before the first bench, at 1.75 miles. There, on the steepest portion of trail thus far, you’ll have a jaw-dropping vista of the lake and mountains. Continue just a bit farther to find the wooden bench, where you can rest while taking in the view.

The next bench is less than a mile farther, but several hundred feet above. It’s worth the extra distance for a completely different perspective. From that viewpoint you’ll gaze up at the Twin Peaks and a meltwater creek rushing toward the lake. It’s also possible to continue on much rougher trails beyond this second bench to get higher on the mountain, but the Twin Peaks trail turns around there.

This trail is within Chugach State Park, which charges $5 self-pay for entry. Though it’s a popular area and generally a busy trailhead, remember that wildlife encounters are possible. You may see moose or even bear, but hopefully only at a safe distance.

Logistics + Planning

Preferable season(s)

Summer
Fall
Spring

Congestion

High

Parking Pass

$5.00

Open Year-round

Yes

Pros

Unique view of Eklutna Lake. Forest scenery. Good workout.

Cons

Limited views except at the overlook.

Trailhead Elevation

900.00 ft (274.32 m)

Highest point

2,750.00 ft (838.20 m)

Features

Family friendly
Near lake or river
Historically significant
Wildlife
Big vistas
Wildflowers

Typically multi-day

No

Permit required

No

Location

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