McHugh Creek Recreation Area

McHugh Creek Recreation Area

McHugh Creek Recreation Area
4.5

Top ways to experience McHugh Creek Recreation Area and nearby attractions

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4.5
4.5 of 5 bubbles46 reviews
Excellent
24
Very good
16
Average
5
Poor
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0

gnp67
Commack, NY321 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2021 • Family
This was a perfect way to break up our drive from Denali to Seward. The area is very nice. The waterfall is right there and a short walk away is this beautiful creek that feeds the waterfall. We did not do any of the longer trails but I’m sure it is worth it. The only thing is it is very hard to enter because it is on the side of a highway.
Written 20 August 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Ashleigh
Eagle River, AK390 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2015 • Friends
This is a multi-use area that includes trailer parking, campground, picnic tables, and trail heads for the adventurous who want to get a great view of the Turnagain and see some incredible old growth trees and lush vegetation.
Easy, close parking next to the Seward highway along the Turnagain arm with a modest $5 day parking fee. There’s a lower parking lot with about a 15-yard walk to a waterfall (great for a quick snapshot if you are just travelling down the Seward South) and a few yards farther, a bench and an overlook to enjoy a view of the creek out of the wind that is so common along this arm. This lower parking area is accessible for everyone from toddlers to wheelchair bound visitors.
Walking up the paved road leading to the upper parking lot, there are also wonderful photo opps with Turnagain arm and the mountains in the background for even those with slightly challenged mobility
There is also an extensive upper parking lot, a camping area, some very clean restrooms, and steps leading to the well-marked trails. We’d decided to take the trail to Rabbit Lake, just 6.4 miles up the Mc Hugh Creek trail. You wind up through gorgeous large old growth Cottonwood and Spruce trees and lush vegetation on a very well marked trail. It is this large vegetation, however, that posed a problem for us on July 11th, 2015. The trail winds around blind corners through the tall devils club and ferns, making the visibility on each side and ahead of yourself on the trail (to look for bears) non-existent. We had bear bells and I yelled out “hey bear” about every 25 yards. The two of us made a lot of noise. I had just yelled “hey bear” and came around a blind corner in the trail, face-to-face with about an 8-month old black bear cub. He snapped his head up and stood his ground while I backed away down the trail. We consider ourselves fortunate that the mother bear did not come charging after us. (Yes, we were properly armed and also had bear spray – neither of which we used).
We explored the trail to the North of the one with the bear encounter, but felt that the head-high vegetation close to each sides of the trail were also unsafe for that time. The area is spectacular, and we would have felt a bit more adventurous with a larger group and more people on the trail (there were only 3 cars in the large parking lot when we arrived at 9am). We will return to this trail in the fall when the visibility is increased as vegetation thins out. We bagged that hike for the day and took a “hike” on the paved trail at the Bird Creek campground (about 8-10 miles further South) runs along the Turnagain arm. See “Bird Creek Campground paved trail with Bear Scat” review – very nice walk with beautiful scenery, but again a lot of bear activity.
Note: We are locals who do a lot of hiking in the Chugach and are not usually prone to canceling a great day hike due to wildlife activity.
Written 13 July 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

ValerieBeck
Anchorage, Alaska, United States14 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2013 • Couples
When I am on call for the weekend, and can't venture far, my first pick for a bright sunny day lies just a few miles south of Anchorage, mile 112 of the Seward Highway. My first visit to McHugh Creek, I was alone, looking for an inspiring view to enjoy my lunch break. With picnic tables overlooking Turnagain Arm, and gorgeous rugged mountains framing the water, I thought it couldn't get any better than this. I thoroughly enjoyed the beauty and peace that surrounded me. I returned a week later with my husband. We ventured along the creek, and about a quarter mile up the trail to a bridge crossing McHugh Creek, that provided a lovely place to saturate ourselves in God's glory. We discovered more picnic tables sprinkled along the edge of the stream and we agreed to return soon for a cook out. So, a couple weeks later, we returned with steaks for the grill and some delicious accompaniments. What a relaxing day! After cleaning up all the bear enticing goodies and trash, we headed up the trail, past the bridge. Up we hiked, higher and higher, eventually coming to a clearing that provided the perfect spot to take in the entire Turnagain Arm. Words, nor pictures can do this place justice. Glory! Glory! Glory! God is worthy to be praised! We have been back numerous times and will never tire of this breathtaking little heaven on earth! Although we went as a couple, this would be a great place to take family or friends. Just watch the little ones!
Written 13 June 2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

b_none55
Arlington, TX238 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Oct 2013 • Friends
Beautiful waterfalls within short walking distance, and beautiful view of Beluga Point too. It is landscaped for easy access, and it is easy to pull off the main road to see it. There are great photos to be taken from here too.
Written 26 November 2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Nanette J
Anchorage, Alaska89 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Sept 2013 • Family
If you just want a short hike to the waterfalls which is actually just steps away from the parking lot or hike for the day this is the place to go. But be sure to bring bear spray as you are most definitely going to see a bear. What an awesome place just outside of Anchorage to hike around for some breathtaking views and lots of wildlife. Happy Hiking.
Written 3 September 2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Meriah A
Anchorage, AK30 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Apr 2020 • Family
My family and I are locals and have lived in Alaska for over 20 years. We took our four kids hiking here early spring and we encountered a brown bear right off the paved path not an exciting Bear spotting! Please be careful and take bear spray with you at least!
Written 23 March 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

DudefrmAK
Anchorage, AK529 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Oct 2019
The trail back toward portage will provide you with the most amazing views of the inlet and surrounding area. You can do an out and back, or as we like to do when we have visitors, leave a car at McHugh and start at Portage.
The hike is not overly difficult, but it can be very muddy in some sections after a lot of rain.
You can head the other direction, or to Rabbit Lake, but those trails are a bit more difficult.
Note well that you will very likely come across moose (know the warning signs of an angry moose), and there was a LOT of bear sign on the trail the last time we went - it's been warm and they are not bedded down yet. Bear spray at hand is a good idea. And PLEASE - pick up after your dog!
Written 6 November 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Christina C
Coquitlam, Canada6,336 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2019
On a beautiful sunny warm morning, we were travelling from Anchorage to Seward, on the way we made a stop at McHugh Creek. There is a parking lot beside the high way, or you can drive up a short winding road to another parking lot, from there you can see the Seward Highway,the Turnagain Arm and the sand bars. A short trail lead to a water falls. No bugs bothered us, it was a relaxing stroll. Although we didn't stay long, but it sure worth the stop.
Happy Travelling!
Written 23 August 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Cocokayak
Anchorage, AK166 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Sept 2016 • Family
Great hike with outstandun mountain and bay water views- lots of bear activity from May thru September- greeted by 2. Grizzlies on trail- watch fir bear scat- travel either others- wear bells and talk
Written 27 March 2017
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

davidkalir
Hod Hasharon, Israel236 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2016 • Family
McHugh Creek Recreation Area is placed beside the main road 1 to Seward. A wonderful place with picnic tables. The road climbs up a few dozen meters above the sea level which gives the place a good point of view on Turnagain Arm . Also in the place nice routes and abundant water channel, a small lake with clear water and a small waterfall but pretty well.To the place also come wildlife such as moose and bears so when you enter the track that can be done from even a short segment only to feel the nature in the place do not forget the gas against the Bears and making noises every time you are in the woods so you will not surprise the bears if they are in the immediate area. Recommend doing section of track in McHugh Creek according to your plains in the rest of your day. This route goes from the far side of the second higher parking lot . There are two parking spaces in the higher sections and one in the lower.
The place is part of the Chugach State Park that considered the third largest state park in the United States. Even our visits to places like Eagle River Nature Center, Thunderbird Falls, Pioneer Falls, and many points where we were are belong to this huge state park.
Written 9 October 2016
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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McHugh Creek Recreation Area - All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go (2024) - Tripadvisor

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