Turnagain Arm Trail

Chugach State Park


This trail is a great choice for stunning views of Turnagain Arm. Plus, there are multiple trailheads giving you different options for route and distance, depending on what you're up for.

The trail is also good for preseason hiking as it's one of the first places to lose its snow. Since it's a relatively easy hike, it's also worthwhile if you have kids or if you're not in great shape. You can start at either end or there is parking for each of the 4 points if you just want to do a section.

Important Information

McHugh Park has a great picnic area with great views as well as grills and bathrooms. I recommend a picnic and then a hike after hamburgers as a family outing with young kids.

Some of the locals refer to this as the Old Johnson Trail (not to be confused with Johnson Pass).


If you have the time, check out Potter Marsh. A long and winding boardwalk meanders around the marsh. Bird watchers will be particularly pleased.

There is a $5 parking fee (bring exact amount) at both the Potter Marsh and McHugh Creek parking lots. The price for an annual parking pass is $60. You can purchase a pass at the Federal Building at 4th and F or the Atwood Building on 7th and E, 13th Floor.

Turnagain Arm gets its name from when Captain Cook sailed up his eponymous Inlet looking for the Northwest Passage. When he turned into the Arm he realized he was mistaken and had to "Turn Again".

This hike was rated 3 stars.
9.6 miles
From Anchorage
10 miles
All year is possible, depending on conditions

Finding the Trailhead

Hike Map

Map of Turnagain Arm Trail