Falls Creek Falls, Alaska

Falls Creek Falls in June 2011

There are a number of interesting drops along the Alaska coastline that don’t get frequently mentioned.  I understand that they are not always that large, but they are still very easy to visit, so why not do so.

One such example is Falls Creek Falls, which is right off of the Seward Highway south of Anchorage in Chugach State Park.  I think I pulled off on a whim to see whether there was any significant waterfall, and there is something there.  It would probably be better described as a cascade.  There is a trail that climbs almost 3000′ feet in about 2.7 miles, and while I had no wish to do that, you will still get a great view of some idyllic cascades.  Even with out the cascades, the area along the Alaska shoreline is intensely beautiful.

Directions:

  1. You’ll be driving along the Seward Highway, and inside the Chugach State Park boundaries, there is a small pulloff with room for about four cars.  This is the trail for Falls Creek.  It is somewhat more obvious when heading north along the highway.

Accessibility: 10/10 (easy)
Height: 15′ (could be much taller)
Length of Hike: Roadside (or 5.4 miles round-trip)

Where in the World is Falls Creek Falls?

Advertisements

Lowell Creek Falls, Alaska

I was on the Kenai Fjords Cruise, and on the return journey, I looked to my left, and low and behold there was this pretty impressive waterfall off in the distance.  Now, even after searching for information about waterfalls in Alaska on the internet, I really didn’t find any information about a waterfall in Alaska.  That really isn’t surprising, as not many waterfalls of Alaska are listed online.

The lucky part about this waterfall is just how easy it is to get to, once you know where you’re headed.  From the center of Seward, if you head south along the main road, you’ll come to a single road that leads further south.  It doesn’t look like it leads anywhere impressive, but I think it does actually lead to some interesting spots.  Just a short distance down this road, though, and you can find Lowell Creek Falls.  In late May, it was pretty impressive.  I thought that maybe it was a man-made waterfall due to its surroundings, but it appears that it is a true waterfall that has been altered slightly to ensure that road erosion hasn’t occurred.

Accessibility:

  1. From Seward, head south on AK-9.
  2. At the end of AK-9, turn right onto Lowell Point Road.  It’s really the only road you can turn onto.
  3. After just a short distance, you should come to the falls!

Accessibility: 10/10 (Easy)
Height: 30′
Length of Hike: Roadside

Lowell Creek Falls in late May 2011

Where in the World is Lowell Creek Falls?


 

McHugh Falls, Alaska

McHugh Falls in May 2011

I have to admit McHugh Falls doesn’t have a huge amount of appeal.  It’s a rather small waterfall, and I don’t like to discriminate against waterfalls, but you really can’t get very close to it.  With small waterfalls, they’re best enjoyed nearby, not behind a fenced area.

It’s one redeeming quality is that it is very easy to visit.  I believe there are a number of unadvertised waterfalls in Alaska, but how many are actually accessible?  This is one of the few that is accessible.  As you driving south along the Seward Highway from Anchorage, you’ll enter Chugach State Park (which is very expansive), and pass the parking area for McHugh Falls.  There’s a $5 daily fee to enter the park, which I always support paying, though the first time I visited, I just got out of the car and took a few photos, and then left.  There is a trail that leads somewhere, though I’m not sure where.

Directions:

  1. Head south on the Seward Highway from Anchorage.
  2. You’ll enter Chugach State Park, and after a ways, you’ll find the entrance/parking area for the falls on your left.  It may be easy to miss, so pay attention.  I’d say it’s about a 1/4 of the way from Anchorage to Seward…

Accessibility: 10/10 (Easy)
Height: 20′
Length of Hike: Roadside

Where in the World is McHugh Falls?

Seward Highway Falls, Alaska

Seward Highway Falls in May 2011

There are a number of waterfalls along the Seward Highway, especially near Chugach State Park. This waterfall here is located further south than the others, and is rather unexpected. I had written down the GPS coordinates, though I seem to have misplaced them.

The falls are found right near a large gravel parking area, and very easy to view once you find them. They are not particularly tall, maybe about 15-20′? I didn’t spend a whole lot of time visiting the falls since I was needed to arrive in Seward by a certain time. Still, it’s a simple stop on the side of the road.

Directions:

  1. Head south from Anchorage along the Seward Highway. It’s found further south, past Chugach State Park. I think the falls are past the split toward Whittier.
  2. As your heading toward Seward, the falls will be on your right.
  3. They are found on the far right of a “parking” area, as I’m not really sure why there’s such a large cleared area off of the side of the road.

Accessibility: 10/10 (Easy)
Height: ~15′
Length of Hike: Roadside

Where in the World is Seward Highway Falls?