Soldotna Parks & Trails
Parks & Trails
This 10-mile circuit of different loop trails is well-maintained and makes for fun hiking and skiing. Look for access from the parking lot at the Kenai National Wildlife Refuge Visitor Center, where there are bathrooms and outdoor port-a-potties. If you come here to ski, warm up inside the center, next to the soapstone masonry heater.
This wide, multi-use trail is popular with locals and a fun hike for everyone. The ADA-compliant trail winds through boreal forest, and it’s the only headquarters trail open to dogs and bicycles. You can even get your pup certified as a B.A.R.K. Ranger, meant to strengthen the relationship with your dog on federal public lands.
During the summer months it’s a great spot for canoeing, kayaking, paddle boarding, even paddleboard yoga. The colder months are just as lively as the warmer ones. There’s a skating loop on the lake’s perimeter, as well as several skating areas on the lake. The City offers free public skates Saturday afternoons, ice conditions dependent, December through February.
In summer, the trails are open to all kinds of foot-powered recreation — walking, running, hiking, biking, photoshoots, wildlife watching and berry-picking. There’s even an 18-hole disc golf course. K‑9 feet are welcome, too. In winter, locals hit the trails for cross-country skiing and fat-tire biking. There are more than 25 kilometers of groomed ski trails, perfect for classic and skate cross-country skiing.
This park is a can’t miss for dog owners and dog lovers! It’s one of the busiest parks in town, with people and their dogs there practically 24⁄7. If you’re traveling with your dog, it’s a great place to give Fido some exercise. You’ll also have an opportunity to meet the locals, learn what it’s like to live in Soldotna, and get the inside scoop on the best things to see and do from people who live here.
This 2.2‑mile loop trail is an off-shoot of the Keen-Eye Trail that departs from the Kenai National Wildlife Refuge Visitor Center. It is less crowded than the Keen-Eye Trail (which was built to accommodate large groups), and while it’s not a difficult hike, it features some light hills and varied terrain.
This beautiful park set along the turquoise Kenai River hosts community events, has a boardwalk, access to the river, playground and more. There’s an ice loop for skating (free ice skates are available during winter festivals) and animal cutouts with white twinkle lights on them.
The Centennial Campground Loop Trail is a great place for a walk right in town at any time of year. It’s well-trafficked, well-marked, wide, and easy for most people to use. The trail is busiest in summer — especially the part near the campground where anglers access the Kenai River — and a little quieter during the other seasons.
The Keen-Eye Nature Trail is .75 miles long through a wooded area with a side trail leading down to Headquarters Lake. The Centennial Trail provide an additional 1.9 mile loop through a wooded area with further opportunity to view wildlife in the area.
If you have your own canoe or kayak, stop for a paddle on Skilak Lake, located in the Kenai National Wildlife Refuge. For a quick hike with good views, go down Skilak Lake Road, past Hidden Lake campground, to Skilak Lake Lookout Trail. Get a glimpse of Skilak Glacier and look out over the lake. You can be up and back in 1−1.5 hours. Up for something longer? Here are two good day hikes: Depending on time, tackle the Skyline Trail. Right… ...more