Petersburg Lake Trail In Alaska

Here is everything you need to know about the Petersburg Lake Trail:

  • Trail System: National Recreation Trail
  • State: Alaska
  • Length: 6.5 miles.
  • Type: Hiking.
  • Surface: gravel
  • Managed By: Petersburg Lake Trail Maintenance and Management Agency
  • Permit Required?: No
  • Website: Not available.

The Petersburg Lake Trail, located in Petersburg, Alaska, holds a significant historical background. The trail was originally established by the Tlingit people, the indigenous inhabitants of the region, who used it as a traditional trade route and for accessing fishing and hunting grounds. The Tlingit people have a rich cultural heritage and have inhabited the area for thousands of years, relying on the abundant natural resources provided by the surrounding forests, rivers, and lakes.

During the late 19th century, the Petersburg Lake Trail gained importance as European settlers arrived in the area. The trail became a vital transportation route for miners and prospectors seeking gold and other valuable minerals in the nearby mountains. The trail allowed them to access the remote mining sites and transport their findings back to the town of Petersburg for processing and shipment.

In the early 20th century, the Petersburg Lake Trail played a crucial role in the development of the logging industry in the region. The trail provided access to the vast timber resources of the Tongass National Forest, enabling loggers to transport logs from the forests to the sawmills in Petersburg. This facilitated the growth of the local economy and the establishment of the town as a major logging center.

Today, the Petersburg Lake Trail serves as a popular recreational trail, attracting hikers, nature enthusiasts, and history buffs alike. It offers a glimpse into the rich cultural heritage and historical significance of the area, showcasing the enduring legacy of the Tlingit people and the pioneers who shaped the region’s history.

While On The Trail

Access Points

1. Petersburg Lake Trailhead: This is the main access point for the trail and is located at the beginning of the trail in Petersburg Lake State Recreation Area.

2. Petersburg Creek Trailhead: This access point is located along the trail, near Petersburg Creek. It provides an alternative starting point for hikers.

3. Upper Summit Lake Trailhead: This access point is located near Upper Summit Lake and provides a starting point for hikers who want to explore the trail from this area.

4. Lower Summit Lake Trailhead: Located near Lower Summit Lake, this access point allows hikers to start their journey from this section of the trail.

5. Swan Lake Trailhead: This access point is located near Swan Lake and provides an entry point for hikers who want to explore the trail from this area.

6. Frederick Sound Trailhead: Located near Frederick Sound, this access point allows hikers to start their journey from this section of the trail.

7. Wrangell Narrows Trailhead: This access point is located near Wrangell Narrows and provides an entry point for hikers who want to explore the trail from this area.

8. Petersburg Mountain Trailhead: This access point is located near Petersburg Mountain and provides a starting point for hikers who want to explore the trail from this section.

9. Blind Slough Trailhead: Located near Blind Slough, this access point allows hikers to start their journey from this section of the trail.

10. Petersburg Lake Campground Trailhead: This access point is located near the Petersburg Lake Campground and provides an entry point for hikers who want to explore the trail from this area.

Transportation Available

1. Petersburg Transit – Local bus service in Petersburg, convenient for exploring the area.
2. Petersburg Taxi – Reliable taxi service for quick transportation needs.
3. Petersburg Bike Rentals – Rent a bike to explore the Petersburg Lake Trail and surrounding areas.
4. Petersburg Car Rentals – Rent a car for more flexibility in transportation during your visit.
5. Petersburg Shuttle Service – Shuttle service offering convenient transportation options for tourists and locals.
6. Petersburg Pedicabs – Pedicabs available for a unique and eco-friendly way to get around the area.
7. Petersburg Rideshare – Rideshare service providing affordable transportation options with local drivers.
8. Petersburg Limousine Service – Luxury transportation service for special occasions or a comfortable ride around town.
9. Petersburg Water Taxis – Water taxis available for scenic transportation on the nearby lakes and rivers.
10. Petersburg Helicopter Tours – Helicopter tours offering breathtaking views of the Petersburg Lake Trail and its surroundings.


The amenities available at the Petersburg Lake Trail may include:

1. Restrooms: There may be restroom facilities available along the trail for visitors’ convenience.

2. Parking: There might be designated parking areas or parking lots near the trailhead or various access points.

3. Camping Sites: Some trails may offer designated camping sites or areas where visitors can set up tents or camp overnight. However, it is advisable to check with local authorities or trail management for specific regulations and availability.

4. Picnic Areas: There could be designated picnic areas along the trail where visitors can enjoy outdoor meals or snacks.

5. Benches and Seating: There might be benches or seating areas along the trail for visitors to rest or take in the scenery.

6. Interpretive Signs or Information Boards: These may provide educational information about the trail, its history, wildlife, or other points of interest.

7. Trail Markers or Signage: Clear trail markers or signage may be present to guide visitors and prevent them from getting lost.

8. Trash Receptacles: There may be trash cans or bins along the trail to encourage proper waste disposal.

9. Water Fountains or Hydration Stations: Some trails may have water fountains or hydration stations where visitors can refill their water bottles.

10. Dog-Friendly Areas: If allowed, there might be designated areas where visitors can bring their dogs on the trail.

It is important to note that the availability of these amenities can vary depending on the specific trail section, local regulations, and maintenance efforts. It is recommended to check with local authorities or trail management for the most up-to-date information on amenities at the Petersburg Lake Trail.

Nearby Services

1. Lakeview Lodge – A cozy lakeside lodging option with stunning views of Petersburg Lake.
2. Trailside Inn – Conveniently located near the trail, offering comfortable accommodations for hikers.
3. Riverside Campground – A scenic campground along the trail, perfect for outdoor enthusiasts.
4. Mountain View Hotel – A charming hotel nestled in the mountains, providing a peaceful retreat for visitors.
5. Lakeside Diner – A popular eatery serving delicious meals with a beautiful view of Petersburg Lake.
6. Trailside Cafe – A cozy cafe offering quick bites and refreshing beverages for hikers.
7. Petersburg General Store – A convenient stop for emergency supplies and basic necessities.
8. Petersburg Medical Center – A nearby medical facility providing emergency services and healthcare support.

Petersburg Lake Trail Difficulty Notes

The Petersburg Lake Trail offers a moderate difficulty level for hikers. The trail spans approximately 5 miles and features a variety of terrains, including rocky sections, steep inclines, and uneven surfaces. Hikers should be prepared for some challenging sections that require careful footing and endurance. However, the trail is well-marked and maintained, making navigation relatively easy. With proper preparation and hiking experience, adventurers can enjoy the beautiful scenery and rewarding views that the Petersburg Lake Trail has to offer.

Features And Attractions

The Petersburg Lake Trail offers a variety of scenic views, historical sites, natural landmarks, and more. Here are some notable attractions along the trail:

1. Petersburg Lake: The trail itself follows the shoreline of Petersburg Lake, providing beautiful views of the water and surrounding landscape.

2. Petersburg Lake Dam: Located at the southern end of the lake, the dam offers a unique sight and an opportunity to learn about the area’s hydroelectric power generation.

3. Petersburg Lake State Recreation Area: This recreation area offers camping, fishing, boating, and hiking opportunities. It’s a great place to relax and enjoy the natural beauty of the lake.

4. Petersburg Lake Wildlife Management Area: As you hike along the trail, keep an eye out for various wildlife species that inhabit the area, including birds, deer, and small mammals.

5. Historic Petersburg: The trail passes through the town of Petersburg, which has a rich history dating back to the 19th century. Explore the historic downtown area and visit local shops, restaurants, and museums.

6. Petersburg Battlefield: This Civil War battlefield is located near the trail and offers a chance to learn about the area’s role in the conflict. Take a guided tour or explore the interpretive trails to gain insight into the battle that took place here.

7. Natural Landscapes: The trail showcases the natural beauty of the region, including forests, wetlands, and rolling hills. Enjoy the changing scenery as you hike along the trail.

8. Petersburg Lake Overlook: There are several overlook points along the trail that provide stunning views of the lake and surrounding landscape. Take a moment to pause and appreciate the beauty of the area.

9. Petersburg Lake Nature Center: Located near the trail, the nature center offers educational exhibits and programs about the local flora, fauna, and ecosystems. It’s a great place to learn more about the natural history of the area.

10. Petersburg Lake Picnic Area: Take a break from hiking and enjoy a picnic at one of the designated areas along the trail. These spots offer scenic views and a chance to relax and refuel.

These are just a few of the many attractions along the Petersburg Lake Trail. Whether you’re interested in history, nature, or simply enjoying the outdoors, this trail has something for everyone.

Usage Guidelines

1. Pets must be kept on a leash at all times.
2. Clean up after your pet and dispose of waste properly.
3. Respect wildlife and do not disturb or feed them.
4. No hunting or fishing allowed on the trail.
5. Bicycles and motorized vehicles are not permitted on the trail.
6. Stay on designated trails and do not venture off into restricted areas.
7. Camping or overnight stays are not allowed on the trail.
8. Fires and open flames are strictly prohibited.
9. Do not litter and carry out any trash or waste with you.
10. Follow all posted signs and regulations.
11. Be mindful of seasonal restrictions, such as closures during winter months or specific hours of operation.
12. Use caution and be aware of potential hazards, such as uneven terrain or slippery surfaces.
13. Respect other trail users and yield to pedestrians.
14. Do not disturb or damage any structures, markers, or natural features along the trail.
15. Be prepared with appropriate gear, water, and supplies for your hike.
16. Check for any trail updates or closures before your visit.

Seasonal Information

The Petersburg Lake Trail, located in Petersburg, Alaska, offers breathtaking views and a variety of outdoor activities for visitors to enjoy. The best times of the year to visit this trail are during the summer months, from June to August. During this time, the weather is generally mild, with temperatures ranging from 50 to 70 degrees Fahrenheit (10 to 21 degrees Celsius). The long daylight hours allow for extended exploration and make it an ideal time for hiking, fishing, and wildlife spotting.

One of the highlights of visiting the Petersburg Lake Trail is the opportunity to witness the stunning natural beauty of the area. The trail winds through lush forests, alongside crystal-clear lakes, and offers panoramic views of the surrounding mountains. During the summer, the trail is adorned with vibrant wildflowers, creating a picturesque landscape that is perfect for photography enthusiasts.

It is important to note that the Petersburg Lake Trail has seasonal closures during the winter months. From November to April, the trail is often covered in snow and ice, making it unsafe for hiking or other outdoor activities. Additionally, the reduced daylight hours and colder temperatures make it less enjoyable for visitors. It is advisable to check with local authorities or visitor centers for the exact dates of closure and reopening to plan your visit accordingly.

Overall, the best time to visit the Petersburg Lake Trail is during the summer when the weather is pleasant, the trail is accessible, and the natural beauty of the area is at its peak. Whether you are an avid hiker, a nature lover, or simply seeking a peaceful escape, this trail offers a memorable experience that showcases the stunning landscapes of Alaska.


1. Wheelchair Accessible Trail: The Petersburg Lake Trail is designed to be accessible for wheelchair users, with a smooth and level surface throughout the trail.
2. Accessible Parking: The trail provides designated accessible parking spaces near the trailhead, ensuring convenient access for individuals with disabilities.
3. Accessible Restrooms: Accessible restrooms are available near the trailhead, equipped with features such as grab bars and wider doorways to accommodate wheelchair users.
4. Accessible Picnic Areas: The trail offers accessible picnic areas with tables and benches designed to accommodate individuals using wheelchairs.
5. Accessible Viewing Areas: Scenic viewpoints along the trail are designed to be accessible, allowing wheelchair users to enjoy the beautiful surroundings.
6. Accessible Signage: The trail features clear and visible signage with large fonts and pictograms, ensuring individuals with visual impairments can navigate easily.
7. Accessible Trailhead: The trailhead is designed to be accessible, with ramps or level pathways leading to the trail, allowing wheelchair users to start their journey smoothly.
8. Accessible Water Fountains: Wheelchair-accessible water fountains are available along the trail, ensuring individuals with disabilities can stay hydrated during their visit.
9. Accessible Trail Markers: The trail is marked with accessible signage and markers, providing clear directions and information for all visitors, including those with disabilities.
10. Accessible Seating: Benches and seating areas along the trail are designed to be accessible, providing resting spots for individuals using wheelchairs.

Safety Information

1. Slippery sections: Be cautious of slippery sections along the trail, especially during wet or icy conditions.
2. Wildlife encounters: Exercise caution and maintain a safe distance if you encounter wildlife while on the trail.
3. Uneven terrain: Watch out for uneven terrain, including rocks and tree roots, which may pose a tripping hazard.
4. Limited cell phone reception: Expect limited or no cell phone reception along certain sections of the trail.
5. Weather changes: Be prepared for sudden weather changes, including strong winds and rapid temperature drops.
6. Trail maintenance: Stay alert for ongoing trail maintenance activities and follow any posted advisories or closures.
7. Limited facilities: There are limited restroom facilities along the trail, so plan accordingly.
8. Poisonous plants: Be aware of the presence of poisonous plants, such as poison ivy, and avoid contact.
9. Sun exposure: Protect yourself from sun exposure by wearing sunscreen, a hat, and appropriate clothing.
10. Water crossings: Exercise caution when crossing streams or bodies of water along the trail, especially during high water levels.

Conservation Notes

The Petersburg Lake Trail is a pristine natural area located in the heart of Petersburg, known for its exceptional conservation status. The trail is carefully managed and protected to ensure the preservation of its unique ecological features and biodiversity. As a result, it has been designated as a conservation area by local authorities.

The conservation status of the Petersburg Lake Trail is of utmost importance due to its rich and diverse flora and fauna. The trail is home to a wide range of plant species, including rare and endangered ones. Efforts are made to maintain the natural habitat and prevent the introduction of invasive species that could disrupt the delicate balance of the ecosystem.

Furthermore, the conservation status of the Petersburg Lake Trail extends to its wildlife. The area provides a sanctuary for numerous animal species, including migratory birds, amphibians, and mammals. The trail’s management focuses on protecting these species and their habitats, ensuring their survival and promoting biodiversity conservation.

In conclusion, the Petersburg Lake Trail boasts an exceptional conservation status, reflecting the commitment to preserving its natural beauty and ecological integrity. The careful management and protection of this area contribute to the conservation of its unique flora and fauna, making it a valuable asset for both the local community and the wider region.

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