Wrangell St. Elias National Park
Hiking Trip: Dixie Pass
Distance: 28 miles, out and back
Approx. hiking time: 3-4 days
Total elevation gain: +5433, -1352
Best season: June - September
Access: McCarthy Road, Mile 14.5
Maps: USGS Valdez C-1, McCarthy C-8
Challenges: A few moderate stream crossing, moderate route finding
This trip gets you into such beautiful country from a road-accessible trailhead, that it almost feels like cheating. The views from the pass are outstanding and wildlife can frequently be spotted on the route. If you spend a lot of time in the deep interior of Wrangell-St. Elias it's easy to think of anything so close to the McCarthy Road as not being very remote. But the truth is the whole park is remote and just driving down the McCarthy Road is a trip through the wilderness. Try telling the bears crossing the road that it's not backcountry.
Even detailed route descriptions such as those found in the book are not a substitute for skills and experience. If you would like to do this route but don't feel that you are ready to tackle the Alaskan wilderness on your own, consider a guided trek.
If you are interested in doing this route as part of a guided trek, click here for more information on guided backpacking treks in Wrangell St. Elias National Park.