Free Places to Ski & Snowboard Near Anchorage
Updated July 2023, Free Places to Ski & Snowboard Near Anchorage was originally published in October 2015
Winter is just around the corner and you may be looking for free places to ski and snowboard near Anchorage to avoid the list lines (and prices!).
Note that the following suggestions for places to ski and snowboard will need to be taken at your own risk. These all are generally ungroomed, backcountry, so you should have training in avalanche safety, and know how to use probes/beacons, etc. as well.
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Turnagain Pass is located about 50 miles south of Anchorage along the Seward Highway. There are several areas to choose from in Turnagain Pass. Popular spots include Corn Biscuit, Pete’s, Pastoral Peak, Tin Can, Eddie’s, Wolverine… just to name a few spots. Tin Can is a personal favorite of mine.
Mile-High Road, Eagle River
Just past the mile 3 marker on Eagle River Road, in the community of Eagle River just north of Anchorage. Switchback up until you see the pull-off at Beaver Road. Walk on past the antennae (if you’re looking up the mountain this would be to your right).
You should see the start of the trail easily. Eventually, you will arrive at a saddle, looking to your right you’ll see Mt. Magnificent. This is the better side to come down in my opinion.
This is a good option especially if you live in Eagle River.
Located out in the Mat-Su valley, technically the southwest of the Talkeetna Mountains. There are plenty of places to hike up and ride down. Or you can join the hillbilly ski lift (ok, maybe that’s just what I call it), otherwise known as 16 Mile, someone drives you up, you ride down, they pick you up and repeat.
South Fork, Eagle River
Back Hiland road out in Eagle River. Start hiking up from the South Fork Trail Head.
Sometimes the actual ski lift will be open. But if you want to go for free or if it’s not open there are plenty of places to hike up around back here. Take the Arctic Valley exit off the Glenn Highway.