February 27, 2019 by: Marcella Suydam
My Four Favorite Hikes and Walks in Homer
I love getting outdoors in Homer, especially on gorgeous, bluebird days. So let’s talk about some fun walks and hikes in Homer! Here are four of my favorites, located in downtown Homer or a short drive away. If I am in town and want a shorter but invigorating walk I choose either the Reber Trail or the Ray Clapp Trail. If I’m not in town, I will sometimes take a quick drive from Cozy Cove to either Crossman Ridge or Eveline State Recreational Park. Each of these trails has its benefits!
Ray Clapp Trail
The Ray Clapp Trail is in Stream Hill Park. From Cozy Cove Inn, take East End Rd. out for about three fourths a mile and look for the Stream Hill Park sign on your left. Once there, you can park your car on the left. Once you’re over the footbridge, you’ve begun the Ray Clapp trail. Take it up. When you get a bit higher there are two options. You can veer off the little path to the left which takes you up higher, or you can go straight which will lead you to the road that runs through Stream Hill Park. I like stopping at the top of the road for the views or photos. Then I walk down the road admiring the beauty.
The Reber Trail is accessible from the road leading to the hospital. Before you hit the hospital, take a left on Fairview Ave. Drive to the end of the road and park your car on the right (there is a home on the left). Once parked, continue to walk on the road, which automatically turns into the Reber trail. The wild flowers on this path are so wonderful. I love seeing the wild roses and lupines. It’s lovely seeing the foliage change as the season moves on as well. Once you get to the top of the trail, continue left on the road (Reber Road) to meet up with West Hill Road. I take a moment to admire the impeccable garden of the home directly across the road, then I turn around and head back to my car. This is a short and sweet hike, about 30 minutes.
Though not a formal hike listed, Crossman Ridge is a great place to get into nature just a quick drive from Cozy Cove Inn. Crossman Ridge is accessible from the reservoir, which is close to Cozy Cove Inn. Just make a left onto Skyline Drive from Cozy Cove Drive and drive for approximately one fourth a mile before you make a right down to the reservoir. Once across the bridge, park your car. Then head up the road on foot. I usually go all the way up, then take a left, and walk for a while longer along the trail. It is so beautiful up there. Great for biking too. In a future blog I’ll share a wonderful mountain biking loop starting at the Inn using Crossman Ridge.
Eveline State Recreation Site
Eveline State Recreation Site is about 11 miles out East End Road. I have a tendency go out that direction on gorgeous bluebird days as the Chugiak mountain range gets closer and closer, bringing beautiful sights. After driving for about 11 miles, look for the Eveline sign and then make a left. Follow the road and park once you see the trailhead sign. There are a lot of little pathways there, perfect for a pick-your-length hike It’s also a great place for cross country skiing, as it meets up with the McNeil Canyon ski area and hiking trails. I’ll be sharing a ski blog trail in the future, so look forward to more on that.
Quick note about moose: moose like to hang around on all these trails. Don’t worry, they’re harmless and won’t give you any difficulty if you leave them alone and give them space. It’s especially fun when they have their babies with them. Once I saw a mommy moose in labor right in the middle of the Ray Clapp trail. I decided to leave her in peace and turned around. It is nice watching those little ones grow as I’m sure they still hang around that area.
I find the trails in Homer not nearly as exerting as the ones in Kachemak Bay State Park, but they certainly are awesome. We are very fortunate to have such nice hikes and walks here in Homer to strengthen our hearts and fill us with joy.