Hiking in Kodiak

Kodiak is a hiker’s dream, with mountainous land, limited tree growth, and a road system that gives you easy access to beaches and trails. Whether you’re a peak bagger or beachcomber, birdwatcher or botanist, you’ll find numerous hikes to enjoy. Discover the joys of plant identification in the alpine meadows of Pyramid Mountain. Then take your family to the tide pools of Fort Abercrombie State Park, where you can watch sea stars devour mussels while anemones open and close their vibrant tentacles.

If you want company, check out the group hikes led by the local Audubon Society, or join the annual race up Pillar Mountain, held each May during the Crab Festival.

There’s a waterproof hiking map for sale at the Kodiak Visitor’s Center, and remember to bring a camera, water bottle, rain gear, sturdy boots, and a snack.

Bears along the road system aren’t common, but they aren’t unheard of, either. So hike in groups, make noise when walking, and consider carrying bear spray.

Easy Walks/Beachcombing

These are great destinations for wildlife enthusiasts, families, and photographers. Hiking distances vary, since many of these spots are beaches or rivers. Remember to pay attention to the tides, and consider bringing binoculars and a bird or plant field guide.

Mountains and Big Hikes

These trails are tough: they either gain elevation quickly or require some route finding and experience in the woods. Be prepared for rapid weather changes in the alpine environment and encounters with wildlife. Always carry layers, rain gear, food, and water on these hikes. And don’t forget your camera. The views of ocean and alpine valleys from many of these hikes are spectacular.

Share your trail notes with us

Help us keep our trail information current.

Send us your notes

Show Map

Parks & Trails

Difficulty: Easy

For a gen­tle stroll on a sur­faced path, Kodi­ak’s Bik­ing & Walk­ing Path begins at the cor­ner of Ben­ny Ben­son and Rezenof Road, and par­al­lels Rezanof north­ward 2 miles to the entrance to Fort Aber­crom­bie State His­tor­i­cal Park. This is a rel­a­tive­ly flat path used by jog­gers dog walk­ers, bik­ers and walk­ers, that trav­els past Mill Bay Beach, a French pas­try and cof­fee shop and the trail had to the Island Lake Trail. For a longer walk, add…  ...more

Difficulty: Easy

Only lim­it­ed access is allowed to this mil­i­tary reser­va­tion. Access the trails through the pedes­tri­an gates in the fence at the end of Wood­land Dri­ve. Walk along an old road to the cape. There are nice short hikes along the sea cliffs and a north­east­er­ly beach. This area is espe­cial­ly rec­om­mend­ed on stormy nd rainy days when east­er­ly gales will unveil the ocean’s fury. The wild­flower mead­ows are beau­ti­ful rest­ing spots on calm sun­ny days in…  ...more

Difficulty: Easy

Just over the bridge, this park offers easy beach walk­ing and great pho­to oppor­tu­ni­ties of Kodi­ak. Snap shots of the water­front, have a pic­nic, or enjoy qui­et beach­es. The park is forest­ed, with excel­lent spruce groves that are silent havens for birds and squir­rels. There’s excel­lent bird watch­ing at the end of the trail. Walk the mossy earth and head over to the peb­ble beach­es — it’s a great mid­day retreat close to town.

Difficulty: Moderate

A six-mile round-trip hike that climbs to just over 2,000 feet, this climb will get you great views of Women’s Bay and the rolling moun­tains of the island. Look for ptarmi­gan up here…this is a hike the Audubon Soci­ety does annually.

Difficulty: Difficult

This is Kodiak’s most pop­u­lar moun­tain, and for good rea­son: It’s a chal­lenge, the views are stun­ning, and it feels like a true moun­tain climb — there’s a 2,073-foot ele­va­tion gain in just a few miles. A well-trod trail leads up the ridge, which you can access from the end of the air­port run­way. Fol­low an old grav­el road to the north­east ridge, where a trail breaks on your left. The first part runs through the brush, but you’ll break into open…  ...more

Difficulty: Easy

Whether you’re look­ing for a camp­site or fish­ing hole, glass­ing for birds, watch­ing for bears, or beach­comb­ing, this recre­ation site is a great spot to expe­ri­ence the won­ders of Kodi­ak Island with­out trav­el­ing too far.

Difficulty: Moderate

This trail can be hard to fol­low as it mean­ders through wet areas, thick veg­e­taion and up salmonber­ry slopes before it reach­es the rich sub­alpine mead­ows and even­tu­al­ly leads into a bowl-shaped glacial cirque at the base of the moun­tain. There is plen­ty of great bird habi­tat along the trail so watch for pip­its and ptarmi­gan up high and song­bird and snipe in the low­er elevations.

Difficulty: Moderate

One of the area’s more pop­u­lar hikes (or dri­ves, as there’s a road to the top), Pil­lar Moun­tain offers a mod­er­ate, 2.5‑mile climb to an alpine sum­mit over­look­ing town. Your heart, lungs, and legs may burn, but you’ll have great views and see excel­lent wild­flow­ers, as most of the trail is above tree­line. You’ll rec­og­nize the peak, since it dom­i­nates the sky over Kodi­ak. And if you get wind­ed on this hike, con­sid­er the run­ners who race up here…  ...more

Difficulty: Moderate

Old Wom­ens Moun­tain hike pro­vides great views of Chini­ak Bay, the Coast Guard base and Kodi­ak city and har­bor. The sur­round­ing moun­tain scenery is breath­tak­ing. About 12 mile south of the air­port road, take a right turn on the paved road up to Avi­a­tion Hill.” Turn left at the entrance to the sub­di­vi­sion and park at the end of the road behind the Coast Guard Loran build­ing. You will find the trail­head at the far end of the park­ing lot. An…  ...more

Difficulty: Moderate

Fol­low the trail that winds upward through tall grass cross­ing some wet places. After about 1.5 miles, you come to the lake, which is a beau­ti­ful place for a pic­nic or swim on a sun­ny day. Keep an eye out for upland birds, bear, deer, and goats.

Difficulty: Easy

This is the high­est moun­tain close to town. If you tack­le this hike, you’re in for a climb, but a large por­tion of the trail is in the alpine, with beau­ti­ful flow­ers and tun­dra. You’ll be climb­ing 2,400 feet in ele­va­tion in just two miles. Watch for upland birds includ­ing Wil­low and Rock Ptarmi­gan, and Amer­i­can Pipits.

Difficulty: Easy

One of the best spots to check out WWII relics, there’s a short trail from the park­ing area on the side of the road.

Difficulty: Easy

The trail par­al­lels Island Lake Creek, which tum­bles steeply through the woods over falls and boul­ders. This is a good place to see dip­pers, as well as for­est birds such as win­ter wrens, var­ied thrush, chick­adees, nuthatch­es and creepers.

Difficulty: Easy

One of the eas­i­est beach­es to access from town, this park has a nice over­look and excel­lent water­front with pic­nic sites. In late July through Sep­tem­ber, you can fish from the beach for sil­ver and pink salmon. Bird­ing is good year round, but it’s espe­cial­ly great dur­ing the winter.

Difficulty: Moderate

This is a well-used and busy ATV road that leads up the Amer­i­can Riv­er and over a pass to Saltery Cov­er. It is only open to trail bikes, ATVs and hik­ers. While it is pos­si­ble to hike the road, be aware that you will need to ford some streams.

Difficulty: Easy

Mayflower Beach is a black sand and stone beach with views across the bay to forest­ed hills and moun­tains. Lis­ten to the waves crash against the shore and smell the fresh ocean smell. Beach­comb­ing, pic­nick­ing, & hik­ing are all great things to do in this area. 

Difficulty: Easy

Loved by locals and trav­el­ers alike, this 182-acre state park has numer­ous trails, beach­es, and rocky view­points. For his­to­ry buffs, the trails take you past bunkers and relics from WWII out­posts in the area. You’ll also find sum­mer nat­u­ral­ist pro­grams where you can learn about ecol­o­gy as well as ocean and for­est creatures.

Difficulty: Moderate

Hike these scenic ridges and lush meadows 

Difficulty: Easy

Dur­ing sum­mer the mead­ows are full of wild­flow­ers and the views of Chini­ak Bay are spec­tac­u­lar. The south cape is a good place to look for Horned and Tuft­ed Puffins, Bal­ck-legged Kit­ti­wakes, Pelag­ic and Dou­ble-crest­ed Cor­morants, Black Oys­ter­catch­ers and var­i­ous ducks includ­ing Har­le­quins, scot­ers and Long-tailed Ducks.

[{"slug":"kodiak","title":"Kodiak"}]