There are many reasons to visit McGrath, Alaska. Its pristine wilderness and friendly community make it a wonderful place for adventure, pleasure, and relaxation. The town is also home to the famous Iditarod Trail. If you are planning a vacation in the area, you should visit the following places.
Innoko National Wildlife Refuge
The Innoko National Wildlife Refuge is an area that’s home to a diverse range of wildlife. With more than 4.6 million acres of protected land, it’s the largest waterfowl area in the Interior of Alaska. The refuge is divided into two units: the Kaiyah Flats Unit, which is 751,000 acres southwest of Galena, and the Southern Unit, which is 3.85 million acres and surrounds the Innoko River.
While there is no road access to the Innoko Refuge, most visitors arrive via float plane in the summer and by snowmobile in the winter. Visitors can also use folding kayaks or inflatable rafts to get to the refuge. Because the refuge is so remote and inaccessible by car, visitors usually take a charter or guided trip out of McGrath, where several charter operators are available.
The Innoko National Wildlife Refuge is the fifth-largest refuge in the National Wildlife Refuge System and is home to a variety of wildlife, including big northern pike. The Innoko Wilderness Area is also home to a variety of lakes and vernal pools.
The Innoko River provides habitat to large northern pike and grayling, as well as salmon. The refuge is popular for hunting. It is also home to red foxes, martens, and lynx.
If you are interested in musher racing, one of the best places to visit in Mcgregor, Alaska is the Iditarod Trail. This is a famous sled dog race that is held every year. Visitors will be able to watch mushers compete and learn about the history of the sport.
The Iditarod Trail is a 1,000-mile route that includes both historic trails and new, modern-day trails. Initially, only the northern portion of the trail was used for the race, but after a few years, the route was rotated between the northern and southern sections of the trail. This helped spread attention to the trail and relieve the stress on small communities. This helped revitalize small communities such as Shageluk, Anvik, and Grayling.
While the Iditarod Trail is famous for its annual dog sled race, it is also a National Historic Trail. Many parts of this trail are open to the public all year round. Travel vans are available to take people to these remote areas.
The trail is home to four-time Iditarod champions Martin Buser and Jeff King. King stepped in to run the team of Nic Petit after the athlete contracted COVID-19 days before the race. The current Iditarod winner is Pete Kaiser. He is the youngest musher to win the Iditarod.
The Iditarod Trail starts at Seward and continues toward Johnson Pass. At the end of the trail, it reaches the first campsite in the Johnson Pass Trail. Another campground is located at South Beach on Resurrection Bay, near the rocks on the southwest end of the sandy beach. You can also visit Caines Head State Recreation Area.
Another place to visit while you’re in McGregor is the McGregor Mountain Lodge. Located in Estes Park, McGregor Mountain Lodge offers incredible views of the mountains and the surrounding terrain. Visitors are also likely to see wildlife, including elk.
You can take a dog team ride on the Iditarod Trail. This trail has historically been a waypoint between Seward and mining camps in the north. The railroad started in Seward on May 4, 1904. This road provided a safe alternative route for dog teams to travel to the interior gold fields.