Biking in Alaska
See Alaska by pedal power! Bike trips in Alaska let you see the state at your own pace. Try a multi-day, supported bike ride along some of Alaska’s most scenic settings or rent a bike for an afternoon city tour. Customizable guided trips allow you to choose your level of intensity and combine different activities into one memorable trip. Through rainforests and mountains, on single track trails or urban bike paths, by mountain bike or road bike, make Alaska the bicycle trip of your dreams. The endless possibilities make biking in Alaska a great way to get out and explore. Explore a few of the best places to bike in Alaska below.
Biking in the Summer
Tongass National Forest
Tongass National Forest is the nation's largest national forest, covering most of Alaska's Inside Passage, offering opportunities to view eagles, bears, salmon, and awe-inspiring vistas. Along with the beautiful views, the National Forest has dozens of mountain biking and road cycling trails to explore. Take a scenic ride from the coasts to the mountaintops, where you can find the perfect trek for your group, from intermediate to challenging.
Kincaid Park is a large multi-use recreation area located in Anchorage with access to cross-country skiing, walking trails, and of course, mountain biking. The terrain is rolling, heavily wooded, and features stiff climbs and sharp turns, as well as a couple of more leisurely trails. The park has nearly 40 miles of trails, including single track and paved, that run through thick forests and offer mountain and coastal views. Whether you want a leg-burning workout, or just a leisurely cruise, you will not be disappointed riding at Kincaid Park.
Ending at Kincaid Park, the Tony Knowles Coastal Trail winds 11 miles along the coast from downtown Anchorage. This trail is the most popular in the area, and for good reason. On this paved multi-use path you can cruise down the fault line of the ‘64 earthquake, ride through dense forests with possible moose and eagle sightings, enjoy coastal views of the Cook Inlet, and spot North America’s highest peak, Denali.
Denali National Park
Speaking of Denali…Denali National Park is the place to go if you are looking for a thrill-seeking biking adventure. But, keep in mind, biking the Park Road is only recommended for those well-versed in what to do when encountering wildlife. This dirt road, the only road into the park, is shared with park tour busses and requires riders to pay special attention to wildlife behavior, especially grizzly and black bears. Biking in Denali offers opportunities for one hour, one day, and even multi-day trips as it is a popular destination for overnight bike camping. If you're looking for a nice day trip, start at Mile 15 and end at Sanctuary River for a 14-mile round trip ride.
Biking on Kodiak Island
If you're visiting Kodiak Island you'll find some adventurous biking experiences with big views. There are several mountain biking routes and dirt roads in the city of Kodiak, and cyclists will enjoy biking along the island's approximately 90 miles of road system. Wherever you go, there is no shortage of beautiful ocean and mountain views on Kodiak Island.
Biking in the Winter: Fat Tire Biking
If you think biking is only a summer activity — think again. Hop on a fat tire bike, or fat bike, for some winter fun. This winter sport has been growing in popularity yearly and is now right alongside skiing and snowboarding as a favorite winter pastime. If you’ve never seen a fat bike, imagine a mountain bike with extra wide tires, designed for added control in snowy conditions. Fat bike rentals often include pogies, which are insulated covers attached to the handlebars to keep your hands warm. Studded tires are also an option for extra control on snow and ice.
Experience Anchorage in all of its winter glory on a fat bike. Anchorage has 150 miles of multi-use trails to explore in the winter. Some of the most popular spots for fat biking are Kincaid Park and the Tony Knowles Coastal Trail. Need a little extra oomph? Turn it up a notch with an electric fat bike. It’s easy to rent a fat tire bike for an independent adventure, or consider joining a guided fat biking tour - a great option for family fun.
Knik Glacier is located 50 miles north of Anchorage and can be accessed from Hunter Creek and Jim Creek. It is most commonly entered from Hunter Creek, but this entrance requires crossing the main stem of Knik River, which can be quite humbling in negative degree weather. This challenging 20+ mile ride requires studded tires, and although it is possible to ride without them in some conditions, they are definitely recommended! This ride requires maximum preparation, as it can be dangerous if not done correctly. But, when it’s done safely, it will be the ride of a lifetime – treating you to stunning views of Knik Glacier. Consider a guided tour to let the experts lead the way and make sure that you’re outfitted with the proper gear.
Located in just 40 minutes south of Anchorage, Girdwood is known for not only skiing and snowboarding in the winter, but also fat tire biking. Rentals are available from the Alyeska Resort Daylodge and from there you can explore fun loops, forested trails, and wide multi-use trail options for all riding levels.
Fairbanks is home to an active local biking scene, both summer and winter, and there are several places to rent fat bikes and join guided tours. There’s a wide range of trails in and around town that are great for winter rides. Visit one of the bike rental companies for locals’ tips on their favorite spots, or join a guided tour to let the experts lead the way.
Hit the Trail!
Tour companies across Alaska offer a wide variety of bike trips, from beginner rides on wide multi-use trails in town, to full-day backcountry adventures to remote glaciers. For those who want to get out on their own, Alaska offers endless miles of multi-use, single-track, and backcountry trails that are accessible by road bike, mountain bike, or fat bike. So, what are you waiting for? Rent yourself a bike or join a tour and see why this is one of the most popular year-round outdoor recreation activities in Alaska.
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