Alaska is a place unlike anywhere else in the world, and making the most out of a trip to Anchorage means following a few specific safety precautions. If you’re new to the city or returning after an extended absence, knowing these tips and tricks will help keep you on the right trail – no matter where you’re headed.  

  1. Watch for Wildlife: Anchorage is home to hundreds of bears, moose, and other urban wildlife, and it’s important to remember they’re exactly that – wild. Give them plenty of space, never approach wild animals, and remember to make noise (talk, sing, clap, or pack bells) while exploring local parks and trails: It’s the best way to warn animals of your presence, and avoid startling a browsing bull or bruin. Read more wildlife safety tips from the Alaska Department of Fish and Game.
  2. Practice Trail Safety: Hit the trails with a buddy, or remember to share your hiking plans with a friend or family member before setting out solo: Anchorage’s parks and trails are expansive, exhilarating, and still very wild, and it’s important to be prepared prior to setting out. Read more outdoor safety tips from the U.S. Forest Service.
  3. Mind the Mudflats: Anchorage’s expansive coast is lined with silt-packed mudflats, which can stretch for hundreds of yards when the tide is low. Enjoy the beach, but avoid the urge to wander too far out. The mud can be deep and difficult to escape, and the area is home to some of the most powerful tidal currents in the world – in other words, you don’t want to get stuck there.  
  4. Pack a Mask: As Alaska continues to fight the spreading coronavirus pandemic, public health guidelines recommend protecting community health by wearing a face covering in public settings, washing hands frequently, and limiting close contact with others outside your immediate circle (luckily, Anchorage’s spacious parks and trails make that easy to do). Masks are currently required in public indoor settings and communal outdoor spaces in Anchorage: Find more information about the municipal order here. If you’re feeling ill, stay home. Read more public health safety tips from the Alaska Department of Health and Social Services.