Morgan Horse Trail


2 miles



This relatively flat, wide-berth trail tops out at approximately 300 feet above sea level, making it an ideal stroll for all ages. High bush cranberry, alder, devil’s club, and cow parsnip make up dense undergrowth, while large cottonwood, white spruce, and birch create a lush summer canopy.

The Morgan Horse Trail hugs the base of Lazy Mountain, following a section line easement. Multiple access points offer opportunities to easily hike and shuttle for those after a one-way trip. In addition to hiking, the area is a popular destination for summer horseback riding, as much of the trail stays shaded from the midnight sun.

Heavy rain, particularly in the spring, can create muddy trail conditions. Travelers should be prepared for the possibility of a bear or moose encounter and make their presence known while hiking.

Worth noting: Portions of this trail are in close proximity to private property. Respect trail boundaries and keep dogs leashed. This is a non-motorized, year-round trail.

Features: Running, hiking, biking, horseback riding

Winter: Cross-country skiing

Want to explore with an experienced guide? Check out Revel Treks & Tours to plan your adventure.

Getting There

Trailhead at Lazy Mountain Recreation Area
2955 Mountain Trail Circle
Palmer, AK 99645

Parking is available on East Maud Road (Plumley-Maud Trailhead), East Smith Road (Matanuska Peak Trailhead), or from Lazy Mountain Recreation Area. Directions below are for access via the Lazy Mountain Recreation Area.

Palmer is approximately 45 minutes from Anchorage. From downtown Palmer, travel on the Old Glenn Highway for approximately 2.5 to Clark-Wolverine Road. Turn left on Clark-Wolverine and continue until the road ends at a T-intersection. Turn right onto Huntley Road and follow it approximately ½ mile until it veers right and slightly downhill into the Lazy Mountain Recreation Area.

Driving Directions

Show Map

Morgan Horse Trail Points

Difficulty: Easy Distance: 2 miles

Only a few miles out­side of Palmer, this pop­u­lar win­ter recre­ation area fea­tures groomed cross-coun­try ski­ing trails that are also open to snow­shoe­ing and ski­jor­ing. The upper trails are designed for novices, while the low­er trails are meant for experts. If you real­ly want to go big — and have good weath­er — access the Lazy Moun­tain Trail and climb high into the alpine, with views of the Matanus­ka and Knik Riv­er val­leys. (Note: To avoid a…  ...more

Difficulty: Difficult Elevation Gain: 5670 feet

No offi­cial trail in South­cen­tral Alas­ka climbs as high as Matanus­ka Peak Trail. Begin­ning in a sub­di­vi­sion across the Matanus­ka Riv­er from Palmer, this near­ly 6‑mile-long trail runs up some 5,700 ver­ti­cal feet. Your des­ti­na­tion is the 6,119-foot sum­mit of Matanus­ka Peak, the very promi­nent rock spire that fills the sky just east of Palmer. But despite the impos­ing appear­ance of this moun­tain, the trail to its sum­mit requires no extensive  ...more

Difficulty: Moderate

How to get ThereThe Plum­ley-Maud Trail can be accessed from the end of Maud Road, or from the cor­ner on Plum­ley Road near Caudill Road. 1) Access from Maud Road: From Palmer go south east 3 12 miles on the Old Glenn High­way, take a left on Maud Road, fol­low Maud Road for 1 12 miles. There is a small turn around and lim­it­ed park­ing before the creek direct­ly east of the road. Please be care­ful not to block the entrance to the trail or the…  ...more