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  1. #1
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    Kenai Peninsula Trail Conditions

    Does anyone have info on trail conditions on the Kenai. Specifically I'm wondering about Crescent Lake, Lost Lake, Johnson Pass and Res Pass. I'm coming from Homer so don't want to make the drive if it's not worth it.

    Thanks in advance!

  2. #2
    seedub
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    Haven't been myself, but here is the only info I've seen. Second half of article.

    Biking trails open in Kincaid Park; beware charging moose, skulking bear | Alaska Dispatch
    you may have come before us on no bicycle, but that does not say you know everything.

  3. #3
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    I've heard rumors that Cooper Landing to Res Pass is clear most of the way back, not sure about the other half to Hope though.

    Also heard Johnson Pass is drying quickly, but dont know if it is fully passable. Most say to aim for June 15th.

  4. #4
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    I was on Johnson's last Thursday. The north side was muddy with areas of snow, but the south side was mostly dry with some muddy areas. I'm going back to check out the north side again this Thursday but with the Fatback this time. If nobody posts any more updates I leave another...

  5. #5
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    How was Johnson?

    Quote Originally Posted by kat71 View Post
    I was on Johnson's last Thursday. The north side was muddy with areas of snow, but the south side was mostly dry with some muddy areas. I'm going back to check out the north side again this Thursday but with the Fatback this time. If nobody posts any more updates I leave another...
    Thanks for the previous post. Very interested in your Thursday update. We were looking at Johnson for this Saturday.

  6. #6
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    Sorry... I bailed and stayed in town.

  7. #7
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    Thanks for all the responses. I will be heading over tomorrow and will report back. Word is that the first 4 miles of Johnson Pass, on the Trail Lake side, has been cleared of dead-fall.

  8. #8
    seedub
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    Johnson North on Sunday evening up to the third bridge was mostly dry with many small muddy places. Two large avi to cross right away, helps to know where the trail is so to find it again on the other side. I rode fat but still had to walk several places due to rutting. Would have loved to complete it but ran out of time.
    you may have come before us on no bicycle, but that does not say you know everything.

  9. #9
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    South side of Johnson Pass was great today. Mostly dry and the vegetation isn't too bad yet. Pushkie is starting to pop up though so its only a matter of time before the trail is overgrown! Crescent lake trail was in great shape on Saturday as well.

  10. #10
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    I flew over the Kenai on 6-12-13 to check out the trail conditions. I took a few pictures that I attached. The Russian lakes trail is looking mostly clear of snow. Ressurection Pass Trail is looking good. There is some snow through the pass, but wouldn't be surprised if it is passable in about 10 days. Of course the true test will be riding the trails.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Kenai Peninsula Trail Conditions-about-10-miles-hope.jpg  

    Kenai Peninsula Trail Conditions-lower-russian-lakes.jpg  

    Kenai Peninsula Trail Conditions-res-towards-pass.jpg  


  11. #11
    seedub
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    Thanks for the pics! I was always wondering when someone in this flying state would step up to the plate on recon flights. Maybe we should pool our money and invest in a drone... nah, never mind.
    you may have come before us on no bicycle, but that does not say you know everything.

  12. #12
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    Rode Johnson from Granite Creek yesterday. Bring your fatbikes if you have em because there's a big section of snowfields that can be ridden like roller coasters. A few little muddy patches too, so we were glad we brought the fatties. Also a fee hikers told us they saw a big grizzly, yelled at it when it walked towards them, were then charged, and shot a .44 at it. That was about five miles in. We biked about 9 miles (not quite to the first big lake) and never saw a bear although there was something rustling some bushes.

  13. #13
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    Rode to Upper Russian Lakes, trail is in mint condition-couldn't ask for better. Met other riders coming from snug harbor they said ditto on that section as well.

  14. #14
    seedub
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    JP Avi riding

    Fat recommended but not required.

    Kenai Peninsula Trail Conditions-avi-riding.jpg
    you may have come before us on no bicycle, but that does not say you know everything.

  15. #15
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    I rode Devil's up to the cabin last weekend. It's dry with only a few snow hike-a-bikes which are probably gone by now.

    Yesterday I rode Resurrection from Hope up to the Devil's cabin and back. The trail is as dry as I have ever seen it. No snow, maybe two twenty foot sections of mud on the whole trail and few puddles.

  16. #16
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    Rode Russian River Trail on Saturday

    Got the word from SuperBlinky that this trail was in the best shape he'd ever seen it, and I have to concur! Try to hit it during the week if you can though, as the campground was full and a line at the check-in was easily 20 cars deep. Now that the reds are showing up it's madness. We parked at the roadside pulloff by the southern Resurrection trailhead, and rode from there to avoid the delay.

    Three of us rode to the upper lake cabin and back, no snowslides to hike across, just a few blowdowns that were easily negotiated, and cow parsnip only about a foot and a half tall. Trail is fantastic. Bear scat became increasingly common the closer we got to the cabin, but saw no bears. I can only guess, but I bet the trail continuation is in super shape all the way to Snug Harbor Rd.


    Getting started....Chris above the lower lake.





    Matt making a bridge crossing.





    Lots of lupines in the area of the Aspen Flats tee.





    Cabin and sandwich time....





    ...and a quick return.


    Deceleration Trauma is my middle name

  17. #17
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    A friend an I rode the Russian River Trail the full loop Sat. also. We parked at the Cooper landing bridge parking lot rode through Cooper Landing then up the trail and back around. Saw 1 brown bear and 2 black bears. The trail from the cabin to Cooper Lake is in great condition also great ride.

  18. #18
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    thanks for the memories, I lived in cooper landing for 3 years in the early 90's and rode everything you are talking about.

  19. #19
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    Another for tim208

    Rode Johnson Pass today from north to south. Once again trail conditions are superb. The cow parsnip still isn't very threatening, all the bridges felt sturdy, and sparse piles of bear scat. There's still a couple of small snow patches to cross, you ride through a bit of water along Bench Lake, and a couple of blowdowns still not cleared. Lots of runoff yet as the creeks still seem to be raging, and the falls in the gorge along Bench Creek were probably as glorious as it gets. It was a humid day, but thankfully a couple of creek crossing areas felt like you entered a refrigerator as it was really refreshing!


    Fred testing out an ice bridge at one of the snow patches.





    And Matt riding the bridge...





    No problems at any bridge crossing.





    Despite the low ceiling of clouds the scenery still had some pop, here's Ed diggin' it.





    By Bench Creek standards this was a gusher.





    Saw quite a few other riders out there, probably had the same idea we did, to ride it before it gets overgrown. Kudos to the guy on the green Salsa, riding end to end in both directions!
    Deceleration Trauma is my middle name

  20. #20
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    Myself, Murphy87 and VTVic out for some Resurrection Pass fun. PasKenai Peninsula Trail Conditions-gedc0109s.jpgKenai Peninsula Trail Conditions-gedc0135s.jpgKenai Peninsula Trail Conditions-gedc0136s.jpgKenai Peninsula Trail Conditions-gedc0138s.jpgKenai Peninsula Trail Conditions-gedc0142s.jpgKenai Peninsula Trail Conditions-gedc0143s.jpgKenai Peninsula Trail Conditions-gedc0144s.jpgKenai Peninsula Trail Conditions-gedc0145s.jpgKenai Peninsula Trail Conditions-gedc0146s.jpgKenai Peninsula Trail Conditions-gedc0134s.jpgKenai Peninsula Trail Conditions-gedc0131s.jpgKenai Peninsula Trail Conditions-gedc0129s.jpgKenai Peninsula Trail Conditions-gedc0113s.jpgKenai Peninsula Trail Conditions-gedc0115s.jpgKenai Peninsula Trail Conditions-gedc0118s.jpgKenai Peninsula Trail Conditions-gedc0119s.jpgKenai Peninsula Trail Conditions-gedc0120s.jpgKenai Peninsula Trail Conditions-gedc0125s.jpgKenai Peninsula Trail Conditions-gedc0126s.jpgKenai Peninsula Trail Conditions-gedc0128s.jpgKenai Peninsula Trail Conditions-gedc0147s.jpg
    "It's only when you stand over it, you know, when you physically stand over the bike, that then you say 'hey, I don't have much stand over height', you know"-T. Ellsworth

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  21. #21
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    Awesome conditions right now. Perfect "summer" weather yesterday, a little bit of wind to knock the mosquitoes down and almost no rain, just a mist for a few minutes.

  22. #22
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    Rode Johnson pass on the 4th. Rode southbound. Trail was wet, not too muddy, and in great shape. There were a few blowdowns that had to be bypassed and only one section of snow that was easily negotiated. Took 6 hours.

  23. #23
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    Looking for some beta on res. pass, devils, and res. lakes trails as far as technicality, time and what to expect. I'm a complete noob to these trails and have only Johnson pass for comparison. Any info appreciated. PM me.

  24. #24
    Elitest thrill junkie
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    Quote Originally Posted by smthgfshy View Post
    Looking for some beta on res. pass, devils, and res. lakes trails as far as technicality, time and what to expect. I'm a complete noob to these trails and have only Johnson pass for comparison. Any info appreciated. PM me.
    As a relative newbie to the area (almost a year now), here are my observations from my first Res Pass ride last week (and see above for pictures):

    No steep climbs like I'm used to. Ascents/descents are gradual for the most part. I'd usually expect to rack up around 5-6K on a 38 mile ride, but this was a lot less vertical. You can tell by looking at the elevation profile from Cooper's Landing onward. Supposedly the "serious" climb is at Swan Lake, but even this is pretty mild. Almost no technical climbing except a couple small 100' sections of loose rock above Swan Lake. There is most definitely vertical and you will most definitely climb, just not like 1000' in 2 miles, which I'm somewhat used to.

    I rode a rigid bike. Again, no real technical stuff except for the small cutoff near swan lake, that's a fun little technical uphill or downhill, but you can avoid it completely if you stick to the main trail. Lots of the turns on the trail seem somewhat bermed and you can carry a lot of good speed on most of it. There's nothing really to slow you down on much of the trail, so you make good time.

    A good indicator is that there are people out there riding wal-mart specials. Of course a ride that long gives ample opportunity for wal-mart parts to break and something go wrong, but the trail surface for the most part is pretty tame. Heck, there was even a guy out there on a cross-bike with drop bars! I'd rate it about 3 out of 10 for technical, which is good for a longer ride because again, you are being sapped of energy by lots of rock gardens. Trail is a little narrow at times up higher and kind of a "trench", so that maybe raises it a point.

    We were with a guy from SoCal that was taking lots of pictures and not as fast on the uphill, so it took something like 6.5hrs, but I think by myself I could do it in maybe 4 or so. Hard to judge based on our pace though.
    "It's only when you stand over it, you know, when you physically stand over the bike, that then you say 'hey, I don't have much stand over height', you know"-T. Ellsworth

    You're turning black metallic.

  25. #25
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    thanks for the stoke. going to be up there in aug for a couple of days. hopefully i can find a bike.

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