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Virgin Creek Falls – Girdwood Alaska

Girdwood, Alaska


Virgin Creek Falls, Girdwood


It was about 400 feet to the falls. The trail keeps going up the creek but I only explored around the main waterfalls

Parking Lot Elevation

267 ft

Summit Elevation

368 ft

Elevation Gain/Loss

About 100 ft

Time Required

Less than 15 minutes round trip





Best Season

spring, summer, fall

Sun Exposure

You will be hiking under lots of tall spruce trees

Trail Condition

Good visible dirt trail.



Visitor Center



Not allowed

Family Friendly?


GPS Coordinates:

Trailhead: 60.94833, -149.12525
Virgin Creek Falls: 60.94764, -149.12327

Trail Map

Driving Directions

The Trail:

Not knowing anything beforehand about this hike besides its location, I packed a full backpack and drove to the trailhead.  After about five minutes of hiking I arrived at the waterfall.  You can hardly call this trail a hike but it is still worth a visit!  The trail, of course, continues on above the waterfall and follows Virgin Creek.

The trailhead is at the end of a residential road; just park on the side of the street and you will see the trailhead sign on the east side.

This trail is easy and doable by all skill levels.  I think you will gain less than a hundred feet if you are just going to see the falls.  I didn’t go much more from the waterfall but I would love to come back in the summer and hike farther.

The falls are situated in a beautiful narrow gorge.  Even if you are hiking in early winter you will be surprised by how much green there is!

The “main” waterfall isn’t large but it is still impressive to see.

Hike above the waterfall to see even more.

I hiked to the north of the waterfall up the side of the mountain for a good ways and got some better views of the amazing forest.  I took the photos below in January 2018 and it looks more like spring than winter!

Winter Hiking

Keep in mind that you are near the Alyeska Ski Resort and they do use canons to try and manage avalanches.  So if you plan to hike up the creek in winter be careful.

Also in the colder months the area can be extremely slippery.  I about broke my back as I slipped and fell hard while hiking just from the parking lot.

The Return:

Head back the same way.

Personal Thoughts:

After living almost 10 years in Alaska I have only recently heard about this hike.  I asked a few Anchorage locals if they have heard about the Virgin Creek Falls and they said they didn’t know about it either.

On the way up I saw several people and on the way down from the falls I saw a large group of people and a photographer setting up a family photo or something.  I can see that it could get even more  crowded in the warmer months.

Driving the 1/2 hour it takes to get here from Anchorage is worth it!

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The Bottom Line

Difficulty is basically the length, duration and stress of the Trek. If the Trek is really long then it will receive a higher rating. If the Trek is short then it won't receive that high of a rating. However, difficulty rating also includes how tired we were at the end of the Trek.

Technicality is how strenuous the Trek is. If there is lots of bouldering or if there is bushwhacking involved then the rating will be higher. Technicality also includes if there are steep inclines or the need for ropes and other equipment.

Enjoyment is strictly how much fun we had doing the Trek. Regardless of how tired and exhausted we were, if we had a ton of fun doing the Trek then it will receive a higher rating.

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About The Author
Jeff Johnson
Questions or comments? I'd love to hear from you! JeffTJohnson@ymail.com

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