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Baldy and Blacktail Rocks

Walking the ridgeline from Baldy to Blacktail Rocks

Why I Like This Hike:
This 3,218-foot mountain overs easy access from Eagle River with outstanding views.

Mt. Baldy is a popular day hike overlooking Eagle River that provides outstanding panoramic views of Eagle River Valley and across the Knik Arm. "Baldy" is appropriately named as the top is a round, bare mountaintop. Although very popular during summer months, it can be hiked other times of the year including winter, depending on snow conditions. It's also the starting point for other peaks, such as Blacktail Rocks, Roundtop, and Vista peaks.

The trailhead is at the top of Skyline Drive in Eagle River.
Google Driving Directions:  Mt. Baldy Trailhead

The Nitty-Gritty: 
The trail starts from a parking lot at the top of Skyline Drive. A radio antenna is located just a few hundred feet or so from the start of the trail. From the parking lot continue uphill to the trailhead. From here, follow a wide, well-defined trail that begins at nearly 2,000 feet above sea level. The trail winds through alders and meadows as it crosses through treeline into alpine terrain. With a series of switchbacks, the trail rapidly ascends the front slope of  Mt. Baldy, climbing above tree-line until about the 2,500 foot elevation. Be advised the trail gets rocky in places and can be steep and slippery, especially when wet so you may want hiking poles. The climb is about 1,300 feet over a distance of two miles. 

Although rocky and a bit steep, the trip to the summit isn’t difficult, and the trail is generally family and pet friendly. From the summit, you are rewarded with panoramic views of Eagle River, Anchorage, Mt. Susitna and Knik Arm. On clear days you may see Denali and in the distance, the broad expanse of the mountains of Chugach State Park.

Baldy is also a starting point for other peaks such as Blacktail Rocks, Roundtop, and Vista peaks.

To continue to Blacktail Rocks, descend to the ridge which flattens and widens. You will cross a wide meadow to a ramp rising toward Blacktail Rocks. (The ridge can also be used to connect with Ptarmigan Valley.) 

For details on climbing Blacktail Rocks and other hikes such as Roundtop and Vista, refer to "50 Hikes in Alaska's Chugach State Park" or any of the online hiking apps. 

 Eagle River Steeple Fire on August 12, 2019 observed from the Baldy-Blacktrail Rocks ridge.