Hiking Seward’s Mt Marathon Trail

August 2020

Hiking Seward’s Mt Marathon Trail

While the rain held off in the morning, we headed to a popular hiking trail at Mt Marathon – as if we did not do enough hiking the day before. Mt Marathon hosts (in non-COVID years) a race every July 4th since 1915 up to the top of the mountain – 3,022 feet in less three miles of distance. The record holder completed the race in 41 minutes – amazing!

There are two routes hikers can take – the first being the Runner’s Trail (extremely difficult) and the Jeep Trail (less difficult). Most everyone not running the race takes the Jeep Trail which is a 4.1 mile loop.

Once again, we found ourselves as the only people out for a hike early this morning, which means another chance for an animal encounter. There are several warnings are the trailhead as well that did not exactly paint a warm and fuzzy picture of the trail. We spoke with multiple locals that recommended the trail for a great view of Seward so we figured we would give it a try.

And the first steps of the Jeep Trail was a very steep incline. Followed by another. And another. Oh our legs were killing us. This lasted for a mile. We traveled through the dense forest full of foliage and moss, making our loud noises along the way.

Eventually we made it to a clearing making it to the Bench Trail and began the next leg traveling across the mount through a meadow that we felt a machete would have been useful to help carve out the trail. We continued to see clearings that would have made great distanced wildlife viewing opportunities but none arose.

There was a point where we continued to climb higher and higher, the ground became slippery, and the view just got worse due to cloud cover. We made it to what felt like a landing with what we figured would be the best view we would get for the day.

I would have liked us to get up to “The Bowl” section but I do not think we quite made it since we did not hear a stream nearby (which is apparently at “The Bowl”). The final leg of the journey to the summit is called the Skyline Trail and has the steepest part of the trail but in return you get a great view (on a non-cloudy day) of Seward below.

So while we did not get to the top, or even “The Bowl”, it was still a fun trail to do in the morning. If we visit Seward again, I would definitely mark this to redo on a better weather day and make it to the top!

Continue reading about out Alaska adventure here – coming soon!

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