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Families with children or those looking for a mellow time in the mountains will love this area. The easier terrain of the and the many lakes that are sprinked all around make it a great family hiking choice. This is a delightful route through a magical, almost pastoral landscape. We will pass through rolling hills sprinkled with tiny lakes that sparkle like freshly cut emeralds nestled among velvety green pillows. At the periphery of the central hill country is a ragged ridge line of rugged crags and peaks that form a dramatic backdrop to the gentler terrain of our route. The gently rolling terrain makes this a good choice for a family oriented wilderness vacation or for those just wanting a more mellow adventure.

Our journey begins on the eastern edge of a high plateau with commanding views of the surrounding area including a view into the expansive Chitina River valley to the north. We will work our way slowly across this undulating plateau taking time to explore the many lakes that are hidden behind gentle ridges or tucked away in dramatic cirques at the feet of jagged peaks.

One of the highlights of this route is the opportunity for viewing the many Dall sheep that inhabit the area. The wide open terrain makes them easy to spot from afar. But bring your telephoto lens if you want to get up close and personal with these elusive animals.

There is one difficulty we might encounter - trying to decide on camping sites among the many idyllic spots that beckon at every turn. Bubbling streams with story book waterfalls will compete with towering slopes nearby for our attention.

The Steamboat Hills trip is an excellent introduction to wilderness travel in the Alaskan back country and a great choice for a family oriented Alaskan vacation. This route can be done as a base camp or loop trek.

If you would like to see more pictures of this vacation trek request our CD of photo slideshows from the park.