Alaska’s Best Kept Secret
Finding Hope isn’t always an easy endeavor, but I can tell you from experience, it’s a destination worth getting off the beaten path for. The idyllic seaside town of Hope, Alaska can be found on the south shore of Turnagain Arm at the end of the 17 mile long Hope Highway. Most tourists don’t make it to Hope or even know it exists, but those that do find themselves immersed in a place rich with history and natural wonder. Alaska natives flock to Hope in the weekends to enjoy live music and the great outdoors.
Hope is one of the earliest gold rush towns of the north and at one time boasted a population of well over 2,000 prospectors. Although there are reports that gold mining was profitable in the area, most of fortune-seekers eventually abandoned the town for the Klondike. The current population sits somewhere between 143 and 192 and have a reputation as being very friendly folk. I can confirm that. Today most visitors come to Hope to get a glimpse into the fascinating history of Alaska’s gold rush, or to experience the vast array of natural wonders that Alaska is famous for: Wildlife, scenery, bore tides, and outdoor adventure.
It really was the jumping off point of my own Alaskan Adventure.
3 Awesome Things about Hope, Alaska
1) Where Adventure Begins:
It’s at the north end of the infamous Resurrection Pass Trail, so you can either start or finish your journey here. Hope can also serve as a base for a number of day hikes in the area. If you time it right, Hope is a really great place to experience a bore tide. A bore tide is a surge of water that forms when the returning tide enters a narrow bay. Just remember to stay off the mud flats during this dramatic phenomenon as you could find yourself stranded and in danger.
2) Affordable Accommodation
For $10 you can pitch a tent by the creek. It’s a bit more if you have an RV, but it’s a beautiful place to spend an evening. In the morning you won’t be short of things to fill your day with. If history is your thing, you’ll love exploring the historic, quirky town and checking out the mining museum. If you’d rather take in the scenery, there are plenty of walks along the shore that are easy, most notably Gull Rock Trail which connects Hope to porcupine pass campgrounds.
3) The Nightlife
Seriously. From May – September, the Seaview Cafe is a swinging hot spot for music lovers and beer drinkers. Open Wednesday thru Sunday, the schedule includes live jams on Thursdays and live music Friday and Saturday, making Hope, Alaska a happening place to be. It closes at 11pm, so there is still plenty of time to soak in a magnificent summer evening at the mouth of Resurrection Creek.