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Thread: Fairbanks/Interior Hiking areas

  1. #1
    Member COtoAK's Avatar
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    Default Fairbanks/Interior Hiking areas

    Hello!
    I am fairly new to the area and I think that I have discovered all the Fairbanks area hiking hot spots.
    If anyone else is familiar with the area and have different places than UAF, Creamers Field, Angel Rock, Grapefruit, and Murphy Dome, please do let me know. I am getting my hiking/climbing itch again and I need new rocks to scramble.
    Thanks,
    COtoAK

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    Member northernalberta's Avatar
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    Welcome; I'm a transplant here as well. The Granite Tors hike is fantastic; it's a 15 mile loop with about a 2500' elevation gain so plan on it taking a good 10-12 hours, or overnight. It's halfway between Fairbanks and Chena Hotsprings. There's some great camping at the trailhead too, along the Chena River. Also, drive 85 miles up the Steese Highway to Twelvemile Summit, and hike the Pinnell Mountain Trail which starts there, goes left off the highway, and follows the ridges. You can pretty much make it as long or short of a trip as you want; it's all tundra at that point. The entire circuit is something like 53 miles, and is normally done over about 2-4 days. There's huts up there as well IIRC.

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    Member COtoAK's Avatar
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    Default Anymore?

    Thank you SO very much for responding. Do you know how technical these particular climbs are?
    I don't think that acclimation should be an issue for me. Water helps with that tremendously.
    Do you also happen to know how far up Chena Hot Springs Rd the first hike that you suggested is?
    I just heard today about the second hike towards Central/Circle that you mentioned.
    Thanks again. You have no idea how much I appreciate it!

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    Lots of trails up in the White Mountains. 28 mile Elliot is a trail head that takes you up to Wickersham Dome. Check out this BLM website for info on the White Mountains National Recreation Area, one million acres. Trails, public use cabins, summer and winter motorized and foot only trails. Access trails off of the Steese also.

    http://www.blm.gov/ak/whitemountains/default.html

    EDIT:
    Oh, and Angel Rocks and Granite Tors are part of the Chena River Recreation Area. There's more trails up there also. Here's all the info:

    http://www.dnr.state.ak.us/parks/units/chena/index.htm

  5. #5
    Member 1stimestar's Avatar
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    I love the Wickersham Dome Hike. Here are some pictures from there. http://smg.photobucket.com/albums/v4...e%20Sept%2004/
    These were taken in Sept. 04 and we had a lot of fires that year so there was still smoke in the air.

    You can also join the Fairbanks Area Hiking Club. We go on shorts hikes every Thurs, just around town. Occasionally there will be longer hikes scheduled on the weekends though. http://www.fairbankshiking.org/
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    Member northernalberta's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by COtoAK View Post
    Thank you SO very much for responding. Do you know how technical these particular climbs are?
    I don't think that acclimation should be an issue for me. Water helps with that tremendously.
    Do you also happen to know how far up Chena Hot Springs Rd the first hike that you suggested is?
    I just heard today about the second hike towards Central/Circle that you mentioned.
    Thanks again. You have no idea how much I appreciate it!

    No prob. Actually the more I jog my memory, the more AWESOME I remember the Pinnell Mountain trail as being. Tragedy struck halfway through the last time I attempted it, and I had to get out before finishing, but I think I might have to get back up there on a long weekend this july and actually do the whole thing!

    The Granite Tors trail is about 27-28 miles up the Chena Hot Springs road; it's right near a river crossing on the right side of the road, across from a parking area near one of the campgrounds. When you see that you're approacing a camping area, slow down and start watching for the trailhead on your right.

    Acclimation should be fine; just take it nice and easy.

    I haven't been to Wickersham dome, or even up the Elliott Highway yet...

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    Default Thank you...

    Thank you so very much for all the advice.
    I am interested in possibly doing stuff with the Fairbanks Hiking Club. I think that would be alot of fun for me, but I just dont know whether or not my schedule permits it.
    I'll look forward to seeing more posts if there are any and thank you all again for responding. You have NO idea how much I appreciate figuring out trails in this area.

  8. #8
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    Default Went to Granite Tors

    Thank for the advice.
    I actually did a solo hike on Granite Tors yesterday as my Mother's Day present to myself and I determined that there was an incredible amount of erosion up there due to the fire, that I decided to turn back until I had more time to be able to plan for those downed trees and extra slough that seems to have formed in that area. (Not to mention the homeless guy that was ready to swim across the river and ask me to marry him).
    All in all, it was a GREAT hike.
    I'll definitely welcome more suggestions, too.
    Maybe I'll try downloading some pictures into photobucket and post them here.

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    Member northernalberta's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by COtoAK View Post
    Thank for the advice.
    I actually did a solo hike on Granite Tors yesterday as my Mother's Day present to myself and I determined that there was an incredible amount of erosion up there due to the fire, that I decided to turn back until I had more time to be able to plan for those downed trees and extra slough that seems to have formed in that area. (Not to mention the homeless guy that was ready to swim across the river and ask me to marry him).
    All in all, it was a GREAT hike.
    I'll definitely welcome more suggestions, too.
    Maybe I'll try downloading some pictures into photobucket and post them here.
    The guy sounds a little creepy. Hope you had pepper spray. Too bad it didn't work out; the best part of the hike is at top of the ridge, where the Tors are. The rest is unexciting.

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    Member COtoAK's Avatar
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    Default No worries...

    No worries at all. I think that I will have a chance to pull the whole hike in a couple of weeks. I think that I need to plan better, but that 3 mile stretch I did pretty quickly.

    Even though that guy was creepy, I am sure that I would have been fine. A guy never knows what a woman is capable of doing especially when she has adrenaline running. I had my hiking sticks, too, so that would have helped.

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    I think you'll enjoy Granite Tors a lot more if you go left at the fork right at the beginning of the trail. That way, you get to negotiate the steep, burned out, downed-tree section with gravity on your side.

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    You should try the Grapefruit Rocks. Its 60 or so miles north of Fairbanks. Not well marked but its a nice hike. Theres even a small cave that you can climb up. Heres some pictures from last year.










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    more pictures









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    Wow... I posted this thread forever and a day ago! Thanks for responding.

    I have been wanting to do Grapefruit for quite sometime now.

    Today, I actually did Ester Dome and I ran it. It was one of the most difficult runs I have ever done. Great scenery, though... and definitely quiet. I only saw one car and two people while I was up there.

    My legs are feeling it, though. Wow. It's unreal. Tomorrow... it's biking. It's a good thing that I am cross training because it's that bad.



    ++++
    I am pretty sure that someone from this thread suggested a book called Outside in the Interior by Kyle Joly. That book has really carried me on places to hike in the interior. It's almost my hiking 'Bible'. I have a climbing 'Bible' that I live by as well. I don't know if I am all that ready to do some technical stuff, but my brother in law regularly ice climbs so he and I could very well just go out and climb together.
    Right now, though... some that I have on my 'list' is Rainbow Mountain(s), White Princess, Healy Peak, Panorama Peak, White Mountains, and a few others. There are only so many hours that I can commit between these mountains and Mt. Marathon, though. Very soon I'll be going on a guided trip with some locals on Mt. Marathon, so I'll post those pictures here, but not under this thread because this thread is to be for Interior hikes.
    Lurker.

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    Hiya i'm new to the Fairbanks area, stumbled across this forum searching google for some hiking spots around the interior. I moved from Tenn, and frequented the trails all over the south. I just enjoy hiking so much. Can anyone point me in a direction to some nice places not to far out of the Fairbanks area? I enjoy quick day hikes 1-2 hour, as well as longer weekend hikes. Alaska is such a huge place, it can be over whelming for a newbie like me. I'm really not sure where to start as far as finding nice places that aren't quite so far to drive away from Fairbanks on days when i only have a couple hours to spend hiking. I'm also looking for a fellow hiking buddy. Thanks so much, i only hope someone see's this as i've noticed this forum looks like it has been a bit dead as of late.

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    Member akiceman25's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by COtoAK View Post
    Wow... I posted this thread forever and a day ago! Thanks for responding.


    Lyss,
    Pretty solid advice in this 5 year old thread.

    I would also recommend the book Outside in the Interior.
    I am serious... and don't call me Shirley.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KM2K7sV-K74

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    Member hodgeman's Avatar
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    There are some great hiking spots in the Interior.

    I'm familiar with a lot of trails in the Delta area. PM me if you get down this way and want some suggestions.
    "I do not deal in hypotheticals. The world, as it is, is vexing enough..." Col. Stonehill, True Grit

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