Hi everyone! We’ve been having some lovely fall weather here in Anchorage, and I’ve still got a few things on my bucket list before the snow falls at sea level. So on Tuesday after work I decided that it was the perfect day to go on a biking adventure around Anchorage! Ever since moving from the west side of town to the my new house, I’ve missed running and biking on the my favorite trails. I recently checked out a bike map of the city, and discovered that the trail near my house actually connects to the trails I used to live by, which means that I can travel all over Anchorage on my bike! Ever since then, I’ve been dying to ride all the way to Point Woronzof, which is at the end of the city and has a killer sunset view of the mountains. And Tuesday was the perfect day to do it!
The leaves are all gorgeous and yellow right now, and it’s seriously magical biking through the forest while the leaves are falling around you. It was sunny but chilly (45 degrees), and the sun was setting fast, so I was really glad for my fleece jacket and fleece lined biking gloves. Does anyone else get super cold while biking? I was biking as fast as I could at first so that I could warm up! Once I made it over to the area of town where the universities are located, I found myself in some pretty dense forests and had to be on the lookout for moose, especially on the downhill parts where I was going really fast. Eventually I made it to Goose Lake, and this is where the real fun began.
I was officially on the Chester Creek trail, which is the site of so many races that I’ve done in Anchorage. I flew past the place where I got injured at mile 10 of the Her Tern Half last summer, the portion of the trail where I ran my very first run when I moved to Anchorage two years ago, and the park where I rode my road bike for the first time while training for my first tri. On this trail I learned how to run on snow and ice, met lots of moose, skied on the first day of spring, and made my first running friends! It was like I was coming home to lots of memories, both good and bad. And in between all of those places I was checking out the gorgeous scenery and having a blast!
When I reached Westchester Lagoon I knew I had to stop for a photo break! This is my favorite place to walk Ridley, and I miss living so close to such a beautiful spot. I could stop and stare at the snow capped mountains forever, but I knew I had to keep biking on.
As I pedaled west towards the point, I was treated to some gorgeous sunset views! The trail here goes right along the edge of Cook Inlet, and you can see so many giant mountains off in the distance. You can even see Denali from here on a clear day. Pictures can’t even begin to do it justice.
At this point the trail became progressively hillier, and I had to dig deep in order to climb some pretty large uphill portions. These are the spots where I might walk if I was running, but it’s more of a process to walk when you have a bike – you have to get off and lug it uphill with you, so you might as well just keep pedaling! I was so proud of myself when I made it to the top of the bluffs and was treated to some amazing sunset views. My husband was waiting at Point Woronzof to drive me home, and we just had to stop by Smashburger for dinner on the way home. I’d biked almost 11 miles and felt great, but a cheeseburger always helps!
I had such a fun time traveling across Anchorage on my bike, and seriously want to make this a regular thing. I know I can make it a big loop back to my house by biking through Kincaid Park, but I’m still trying to figure out the logistics of that. For now, I’m just so happy I got the chance to experience my own little version of a “Tour Du Anchorage” on such a gorgeous day!
What’s your favorite biking route? Would you rather have to run or bike uphill?