Day Trips from Anchorage

Old Feb 3rd, 2012, 04:48 PM
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Day Trips from Anchorage

I will be staying in Anchorage for a week with my mother (70) and am looking for some ideas for day trips. She would like to do some wildlife viewing and easy hikes. Any suggestions are appreciated. Thank you.
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Old Feb 4th, 2012, 03:00 AM
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Independence Mine State Park.
Tram ride up Mt Alyeska in Girdwood. Depending on the time of year, you can see salmon run in Bird Creek that goes under Seward Hwy.
If you get up early enough, you can probably get to Seward in time for a boat trip. The marine life you'll see is incredible. There's also sea otters you can see from shore. If you aren't up for a boat, the aquarium is very nice.
I liked the trolley ride around Anchorage which included a ride by Lake Hood where all the sea planes are docked.
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Old Feb 4th, 2012, 07:00 AM
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Just outside of town,. along the Seward Highway, there is a natural wildlife sanctuary with a long boardwalk in a wetland. Lot's of birds and sometimes, other animals. It also has the advantage of stunning views of Turnagain Arm and the lower Kenai. I think it may be called Potter Marsh.

A little further out but still within an hour of Anchorage, I always enjoy the Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center at Portgage, just past the Girdwood turnoff. It is home to a variety of rescued Alaskan land animals in a natural setting.

In the same area, about 12 miles off the Seward Highway, Portgage Glacier is very interesting. You can take boat ride along Portgage Glacier Lake and get up close and personal with glacier ice.

Have a great trip.
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Old Feb 4th, 2012, 11:33 AM
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"Wildlife viewing and easy hikes" near Anchorage. That should be NO problem, simply because Anchorage is adjacent to Chugach State Park, a half-million acre place where both are in abundance. You could take a five minute walk at a nature center or a three-day backpack. Here's some info:
http://dnr.alaska.gov/parks/units/chugach/index.htm
http://www.anchorage.net/articles/ch...ges-playground
http://www.anchorage.net/library/chugachstatepark.pdf

Note, of course, that this is NOT a zoo; and the animals are neither confined to one place nor on a schedule. You might wake up to a moose outside your downtown motel, or you might go into the wilderness for a week and barely see a squirrel. Wildlife viewing is (to me, at least) exciting because there are NO guarantees.
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Old Feb 4th, 2012, 11:44 AM
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Not cheap (but not bad) - take her on a flightseeing trip on a floatplane from Lake Hood. Seeing southcentral Alaska from the air is a not-to-be-forgotten experience.

(Meant to ask, when will this be?)
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Old Feb 4th, 2012, 12:14 PM
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Thanks everyone for the ideas. Alaska is her dream vacation spot and I wasnt super excited about it at first but the more I research it the more excited I am getting.

We will be going in August.
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