Where to Camp in America's Last Frontier
Camping in Alaska is not for the faint of heart. It's home to some of the most isolated terrain in the country. But for those who want an adventure, a better place can't be found.
Today we're continuing our Campgrounds of the U.S. series with a list of the best campgrounds in Alaska. Be sure to leave a comment if you think there's one we missed!
1. Brushkana Campground – Denali National Park
Brushkana Creek Campground is located adjacent to Brushkana Creek at Milepost 104 on the Denali Highway. The country is very scenic with the Alaska Range to the north. Vegetation is tundra and wildlife you may encounter is eagle, moose, caribou, waterfowl, porcupine and more. This is a favorite location for bird viewing. Grayling are fished for in the creek. Learn more here.
2. Eklutna Campground – Chugach State Park
Eklutna Lake Campground has 50 campsites, water, latrines, picnic tables and fire pits. An overflow camping area has 15 sites. Camping fees are posted, and camping is allowed for 15 consecutive nights. Summer visitors enjoy hiking, biking, horseback riding, climbing, picnicking, fishing, boating, and riding ATV's. Learn more here.
3. Hidden Lake Campground – Cooper's Landing
Rated as one of the more popular campgrounds on the Kenai Peninsula, Hidden Lake Campground offers paved roads with paved sites as well. Wide and private campsites offering outstanding landscapes for family fun, a great beach with a concrete boat launch, great fishing and boating, loads of wildlife including lynx, bears, squirrels and loons. Learn more here.
4. Cooper Creek – Seward Ranger District
Located along Cooper Creek and the Kenai River, Cooper Creek South Campground presents a beautiful wooded area with sweeping mountain views. Impressive wild inhabitants include moose, brown and black bears, mountain goats, bald eagles, lynx and wolves. Learn more here.
5. Granite Creek – Chugach National Forest
Granite Creek Campground is conveniently set in the captivating Kenai Mountains, surrounded by wildflowers and spruce forests. The rugged mountains of the Kenai Peninsula lie just one hour south of Anchorage. Learn more here.
6. Chena River State Recreation Area – Fairbanks
More than ever, Chena River State Recreation Area is a park for all seasons. Are you interested in a day of hiking and rock-climbing at Granite Tors? Or would you prefer to harness up the dog team and escape into the snowy horizon, or perhaps ride a 4-wheeler along a forest trail?
With 397 square miles of forests, rivers, and alpine tundra, the recreation area has something to offer everyone. The variety of activities draws more than 150,000 people to the Chena River State Recreation Area every year. Learn more.
7. Birch Lake State Recreation Site – Fairbanks
The lake is popular with fishers, jet-skiers, and water skiers in the summer, and with snowmachiners and ice fishers in the winter. There is excellent fishing all year for stocked species: rainbow trout, king and silver salmon, grayling, and arctic char.
Fishing during the open water months is best from a boat. Ice fishing huts are available for rent. Click here for more information on the Birch Lake Ice Huts. Learn more here.
8. Nemo Campsites – Tongass National Forest
The Tongass National Forest, the nation's largest national forest, covers most of Southeast Alaska, surrounding the famous Inside Passage. It offers unique chances to view eagles, bears, spawning salmon, and the breath-taking vistas of “wild” Alaska. Learn more here.
9. Aniakchak National Monument & Preserve – King Salmon
Given its remote location and challenging weather conditions, Aniakchak is one of the most wild and least visited in places in the National Park System. This landscape is a vibrant reminder of Alaska's location in the volcanically active “Ring of Fire” as it is home to an impressive six mile (10 km) wide, 2,500 ft (762 m) deep caldera formed during a massive volcanic eruption 3,500 years ago. Learn more here.
10. Bering Land Bridge National Preserve – Nome
Imagine a place of whimsical beauty and larger-than-life landscapes: an ancestral home to ice-age giants and turbulent volcanic activity. A land that holds secrets to the intriguing history of human migration, sustains people that have lived here before its establishment as a preserve and continues to be part of a wide breadth of traditions. Bering Land Bridge is unlike any other place on earth. Learn more here.
Some of the most beautiful campsites in the world are right here in our own backyard. Check out our previous article on the best campgrounds in Alabama.
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Editor’s Note: This post was originally published on May 12, 2016, and has been updated for quality and relevancy.