Note: Right now, the trailheads and parking shown on the Baycrest map supersede any trail maps along the Baycrest system, including at other trailheads.
Driving Directions to Trailheads:
KNSC WINTER AND SUMMER TRAILS
Kachemak Nordic Ski Club trails are a “works in progress” and there may be changes from year to year depending upon snow conditions and landowner’s wishes. Maps are for reference only and groomed trails may vary from the printed version. KNSC trails are on a mixture of private and public land. If you are on private land, please respect homeowners and stay on the trails. Skiers are responsible to be in control at all times.
KNSC has built and maintains approximately 80 km of winter trails in the Homer area. Trails are located in three areas: Baycrest, Lookout Mountain, and McNeil/Eveline. There is also a trail that connects Baycrest and Lookout Mountain during part of the season.
The Lookout Mountain system is our competitive venue suitable for school team practice, races and a variety of other scheduled events. Due to the heavy use please do not bring your dog to this location. The upper Baycrest Trails are on private property and no dogs are allowed. Lower Baycrest and the McNeil/Eveline areas are mostly recreational areas and dogs are welcome if there is not an event in progress. Please keep your dog under control. Skiers must clean up after their dogs.
In the summer, The Homestead Hiking Trail goes from the Roger’s Loop Trailhead to the Rucksack Trailhead on Diamond Ridge Road. The Homer Soil and Water Conservation District and volunteers maintain it for summer use. There is also an Arboretum and Nature Trail in the Demonstration Forest near the Rogers Loop Trailhead. At Eveline State Recreation Site there are summer trails and a picnic area. Part of the 1.5 mile loop is wheelchair accessible.
BAYCREST WINTER TRAIL SYSTEM
The Baycrest Winter Trail System includes approximately 30 km of groomed ski trails in the Diamond Creek watershed between Diamond Ridge and the Sterling Highway. The system can be generally divided into two parts, Upper Baycrest and Lower Baycrest and can be accessed from three separate trailheads with parking and neighborhood access points with no parking. The main loops have a high priority for grooming, but the connecting trails and neighborhood access trails are groomed as time allows. A snowshoe trail follows part of the Homestead Hiking trail. Baycrest directions are given counter clockwise, but there is no specified direction of travel. Baycrest trails are two-way and skiers must use caution on hills and corners.
UPPER BAYCREST TRAILS – SUNSET * NO DOGS PLEASE
The Upper Baycrest Trails include the Sunset Loop, Midway, Awesome, Serpentine and the Farside. Temporary parking for Upper Baycrest trails is at the Homestead trailhead off Diamond Ridge road. Please DO NOT park at the fire station or your car will be towed. From town, go up West Hill, take a left on Diamond Ridge. and go about 2 miles. Rucksack Rd. and the Homestead trailhead will be on your left. Park there and hike .3 miles west to access the trail. KNSC is working with KESA and has a couple great options for parking in the future, which we hope to announce before Jan. 20th. The 2.7 km Sunset Loop and upper portions of The Far Side and Awesome are designated as NO DOGS PLEASE – SKIING ONLY trails. These trails are all on private property. Please stay on the trails. Do not ski across the open hillsides or venture into the gullies without permission from the owners.
LOWER BAYCREST TRAILS
The Lower Baycrest Trails can be accessed from two trailheads with parking. The Baycrest Sterling Highway/DOT Trailhead is located just west of the Homer DOT maintenance facility near the top of Baycrest Hill. The Baycrest Roger’s Loop Trailhead is located at the entrance to the State of Alaska Homer Demonstration Forest on Roger’s Loop Road. The Lower Baycrest Trails include the main loops of RAVEN’S WAY, HOMESTEAD, DEMONSTRATION FOREST AND HEADWATERS HIGHWAY. There are numerous interconnecting trails. These trails are open to well mannered dogs. There are other neighborhood access points with no parking. More detailed information about the basic Lower Baycrest loops is included below.
RAVEN’S WAY LOOP – 5 KM
The Raven’s Way Loop is accessed from the Baycrest Sterling Highway/DOT Trailhead and large parking lot. From the trailhead this loop exits the muskeg stadium to the west along the Woodcutter’s Trail. If you choose you can take the Dibble Creek Trail for a great downhill run instead. Turn right to follow the muskeg which make this trail an ideal choice for beginners or those looking to practice their skating or classical technique. Continue along Diamond Creek to an area below the Homer Garbage Transfer site. There is a chance to see lots of eagles and ravens in this area. Turn left to cross Diamond Creek and left again at the next intersection. The trail again meanders through open spruce forest and muskegs. One medium hill provides a little change of pace before the trail turns right to return to the stadium and trailhead. Most of the main loop is on the Diamond Creek Homer City Park property.
HOMESTEAD SKI LOOP – 5 KM
From the Baycrest Roger’s Loop Trailhead, the Homestead Ski Loop heads east over gently rolling terrain until it crosses Diamond Creek. From there the trail climbs steadily to an open meadow on Pitzman’s Hill. A short downhill gives a brief respite before another climb up to the intersection with Master Blaster. The trail continues west skirting the edge of the forest until it comes to a four way intersection. A small bench here invites skiers to take a break and enjoy the view of Cook Inlet, Mt. Augustine and Mt. Illiamna volcanoes. A long downhill run to Diamond Creek is a fun payback for the uphill climbs. A left behind the bailing facility then a right with a short uphill brings you back to the Roger’s Loop trailhead. The top of the Homestead Loop is on private property. Please stay on the trail while on private property.
DEMONSTRATION FOREST LOOP – 2.5 KM
The Demonstration Forest Loop also starts at the Baycrest Roger’s Loop Trailhead and meanders through the heart of the State of Alaska Homer Demonstration Forest. A few gentle ups and down in the woods add interest to this easy, mostly level trail. The 1 K Cutoff and Thru the Woods connector trails join this loop in a large muskeg about two thirds of the way around the trail. Cross Diamond Creek and a short climb takes you back to the Roger’s Loop Road trailhead. Stop by to read the signs describing THE DIAMOND CREEK PROJECT.
HEADWATERS HIGHWAY TRAIL – 6 KM
The Headwaters Highway is a challenging trail with names like Killer Hill, Stitzmark Hill and The Grand Canyon plus lots of tight turns. From the Baycrest Roger’s Loop Trailhead, follow the Homestead Ski Loop until a four-corner intersection with the 1 K Cutoff. Turning right at the intersection, this trail follows an old seismograph line up and down the hills. The Headwaters Cutoff provides an alternate route for those not wishing to venture into the Grand Canyon. In spite of the names, this really is a fun trail through the woods, which connects to the Homestead Ski Loop at Pitzman’s Hill. Heading down hill to the Demonstration Forest Loop and then returning to the Baycrest Roger’s Loop Trailhead completes approximately 6 km. This trail can also be accessed from Mountain Park and Eagle View neighborhoods. No parking is available at neighborhood access points, which are on private property. Remember to stay on the designated trails when you are on private property.
THE PERIMETER – 16 KM
By skiing the outer most portions of the Upper and Lower Baycrest trail system, it is possible to put together a 16 km loop of interesting, challenging, scenic skiing.
OTHER FUN CONNECTING TRAILS
MASTER BLASTER – This is an up and down, tight cornered romp through the woods.
COLLEGE AVENUE – A wonderful, gentle downhill glide through open meadows with a short section of woods.
ROBERT AND ROBERTA’S TRAILS – These trails are on private property but open to all skiers and snowshoers. They provide a way to avoid the Grand Canyon with open meadows and narrow trails through sections of young spruce and also provide neighborhood access for Eagle View and Mountain Park subdivisions.
1K CUTOFF – This is a short easy connector between the Homestead and the Demonstration Forest Loops.
SERPENTINE – The Serpentine connects Upper Baycrest with the Homestead Loop. It has challenging, steep, turning curves suitable for advanced skiers.
BAYCREST ROGERS LOOP MARKED SNOWSHOE TRAIL – 5 KM
When conditions allow, there is a marked snowshoe trail. It begins and ends at the Roger’s Loop Trailhead. The trail follows the summer Homestead Hiking Trail and goes up to the Ruben Call Bench where there are spectacular views. This trail needs significant snow before brush is covered and signs can be placed in the snow.
THE MARATHON TRAIL – 12 KM (Currently not groomed)
This trail is accessed from the Sunset Loop Trailhead, mile 2.1 Diamond Ridge Road. Ski east on the Sunset Loop until you cross two driveways then watch for the trail turning north across Diamond Ridge Road. This 12 km trail (that skis like 15 due to its mega ups and downs) connects to the Lookout Mountain Ski Trail system out Ohlson Mountain Road. This point-to-point trail descends to Bridge Creek, climbs Crossman Ridge, descends to Twitter Creek and climbs to the Lookout Mountain Trail system and is arguably one of the most scenic trails in the state. Expansive views of Cook Inlet, Kachemak Bay, the Kenai Mountains and Glaciers, Mt. Augustine, Mt. Illiamna, Mt. Redoubt, Mt. Spur and even Denali on a clear day make for a spectacular tour on a blue ski sunshine day. (Think March) Usually groomed for the Kachemak Bay Marathon Ski Race and Tour, the trail is maintained in late February and early March.
LOOKOUT MOUNTAIN TRAILS – 8 KM
Located at Mile 2 Ohlson Mountain Road, the Lookout Mountain Trails include a 3 km flat section of trail on the hayfields perfect for beginners, the Junior Nordic program and instructional clinics. The system also includes 5 km of highly developed trails designed for competitive skiing on public land leased from the Kenai Peninsula Borough. There are large parking lots, outhouses, a timing shed, fire pit, and an equipment building. The mowed trails are the first in Homer ready for skiing in early winter. These trails are designate as NO DOGS PLEASE in the winter. These trails are adjacent to private property and the Kachemak Ski Club Rope Tow.
MCNEIL CANYON SCHOOL TRAILS – 13 KM
The trails are located adjacent to McNeil Canyon School, mile 12 East End Road. This system consists of a series of loops, the outside loop being 7.5 km with crossovers at the 2 km, 3 km and 5 km distances. At the 5 km intersection there is a wonderful viewpoint of mountains, glaciers and Kachemak Bay. There is also a 1 km sprint loop directly behind the school about 100 yards out the main trail on the right. There is a 1 km loop for student use in front and south of the school. There is also a 3 km trail to Wolf Ridge that is maintained when snow conditions allow. Parking is in the lower school parking lot. Please do not park in the upper lot. Dogs are allowed on these trails if accompanied by well-trained owners. Please control your dogs and clean up after them. The trails are on Borough and School District property adjacent to many private landowners. The Wolf Ridge trail crosses private property. These trails are for winter use only due to the wet condition of the land in the area. When conditions allow, there is an outhouse for public use adjacent to the snow machine storage building approximately .5 km from the trailhead.
EVELINE STATE RECREATION SITE – 8 KM
Located 1.5 miles past McNeil Canyon School off Alpine Meadows Drive, this 80-acre site boasts a developing network of scenic trails traversing mostly gentle terrain. The system can be accessed by a 3 km trail from McNeil Canyon School. The 3 km Alpine Meadows Loop around the perimeter provides scenic views of rolling hills, Kachemak Bay, the Kenai Mountains and some of the very best views of Doroshin and Portlock Glaciers you will find anywhere. Crossover trails make a variety of easy loops available when snow conditions allow. Narrow trails make Eveline best suited for classical skiing but some portions are wide enough for skating. Parking, an outhouse and picnic tables are available. A separate signed snowshoe trail is being developed. Snowshoers and dogs are welcome. Please do not walk on a groomed ski trail. This is Alaska State Parks property, but is adjacent to private land, so again, if you venture off the trails, be sure you are not imposing on the neighbors. Sections are maintained for spectacular wild flower hiking in the summer. A short loop to the viewing platform and picnic table has been developed as a wheelchair accessible trail.