In Anchorage biking is a way of life. Whether you’re cruising on a cruiser, buzzing a forested single-track on a mountain bike, rolling through a greenway on a road bike or touring with a tandem, you’ll be in good company among the thousands of locals who ride.
Anchorage has been called a “bike utopia” by Bicycling Magazine and was ranked among “America's Best Bike Cities” in the same magazine in 2011. In a city where outdoor opportunities are nearly too many to list, bicycling is one of the biggest summer attractions – and it’s gaining traction in the winter as well.
There’s no need to bring your own steed. Multiple vendors rent bikes of all types with easy access to the city’s growing network of more than 350 miles of paved and unpaved trails. The Tony Knowles Coastal Trail, the city’s most popular, runs 11 miles from downtown to Kincaid Park. The Ship Creek Trail and its connectors run 10 miles from downtown to Eagle River and beyond. The Chester Creek and Campbell Creek trails follow tree-canopied greenbelts linking multiple city parks. There’s also a separate 13-mile paved path paralleling the spectacular saltwater of Turnagain Arm from Indian to Girdwood.
Mountain bikers can get their dirt fix at Kincaid and its 39 miles of looping roller-coaster trails including nine miles of new single-track, or the inclines and single-track of the Hillside trail system. Downhill bombers can ride the lifts of Alyeska Resort and descend more than 2,000 feet to the valley floor.
Anchorage is a hotbed of winter riding as well, with riders choosing either studded tires or the Alaska phenomenon of fat-tire snowbikes. The same trail system you’ll ride in the summer is groomed in the winter for Nordic skiing, with enough room for cyclists and other users.
Got a competitive itch? There’s racing for road, mountain, cyclocross and winter bikes, everything from road racing’s Tour of Anchorage to some of the most extreme winter racing anywhere. Want to go long? Local randonneur rides start at 100K and go up to as long as 1,200K (744 miles).
For the casual rider, the Arctic Bicycle Club offers more than 100 free organized rides from spring through fall. There’s something for anyone!