|Copyright 2014 © Dianne Roberson. All rights reserved.
|Daisy and Duke love riding on my Yamaha.
|Autumn colors are awesome in Petersville, Alaska.
September 14, 2014
Take the Parks Highway out of Wasilla and go past the Talkeetna turn off to Trapper's Creek. Turn left onto Petersville Road. The pavement ends and it becomes a gravel road. Turn right into the
Kroto Creek parking area at mile 13 of the Petersville Road. We park at this large area with restrooms and fire pits on the north side of the road just before Kroto Bridge. The trail is to the right out of
the parking area and up the road to where the old lodge burned down. Turn right there and follow the road as it turns into a trail. At about mile 26, the road passes through the long-abandoned mining
camp of Petersville.
Mile 28-30: The spectacular Peters Creek Canyon. A one-lane road hugs one side of a deep gorge with waterfalls all around. Views of the Alaska Range complete the picture. Now entering the
Petersville State Recreational Mining Area, an area set aside by the State of Alaska for the citizens to pan and mine for gold. If you don't know how, it's easy to learn and fun to do. Just past the bridge
you come to another fork: The left fork takes you to the Cache Creek area and the right fork takes you to the Blue Ribbon Mine and Denali State Park. Take the right fork and travel a little ways beyond
the bridge to the Peters Creek ford, where bears and salmon are often spotted. Crossing the creek may appear daunting. However, the creek is generally quite shallow. Stay away from areas where
strong currents have cut deep channels into the gravel bed. Instead, cross only where the water is rough and shallow, two to three feet. Don't hesitate or stop in mid-stream, just keep your momentum
and move forward. After crossing the creek, the left fork goes to Peters Creek and the right takes you to Blue Ribbon Mine. Gold was discovered in this area in 1898, and the first known mining activities
began in 1906. An estimated 200,000 ounces of gold have been produced since, mostly by small-scale and hand mining.
A very nice trail takes off from here, and by following it for a mile or so, you can overlook the Tokositna Valley and Glacier, the Tokosha Mountains, and of course, Denali, the "Great One." In the 1920s,
the world-renowned Alaskan artist Sydney Laurence painted from this vantage point. Captain James Cook walked and camped here while searching for a trail into the Interior of Alaska.
|After trip report:
We had 8 riders on this ride. Rich and Kathy, Pete, Joal and Margaret, Vince and Brenda, and me (Dianne). Five dogs enjoyed our ride also.T hanks to Joal for leading this ride. I was able to take a lot
of video of the riders in front of me. Vince showed us the back trail that ends behind Denali Park. The views there were awesome and the trail was easy to ride.
We had a wonderful weekend riding in Petersville. I road my Yamaha until my thumb hurt. It was cold at night, like 28 degrees F. The camp fire was roaring hot thanks to Rich.