Nancy and I, with our friend Jeff Ross, spent three days backpacking in the Amphitheater Mountains. This is a small range located north of the Denali Highway, about 40 miles west of Paxson, Alaska. The Amphitheaters are basalt, deeply carved by glaciers, and contain many small and large lakes.
We hiked in along the Maclaren Summit trail north to the west end of Seven Mile Lake, then east along the south shore of Seven Mile Lake to Houseblock Valley, north and up Houseblock Valley to the Basalt Lakes, and then back to Maclaren Ridge. We estimate the total hike was about 25 miles.
Left to right, Jim, Nancy and Jeff. Max is the
Norwegian Elkhound with the curly tail,
Rissa is the (retired) sled dog with the red pack
Jim resting on his backpack. The view is west across
the upper end of High Valley and Rock Creek. In the
distance is the ridge above the Maclaren River valley.
This is classic alpine tundra terrain.
Rissa is our foster dog. She is a retired sled dog out of
a famous blood line. This was her first backpacking trip.
Nancy and Jim with the dogs at the west end of Seven Mile Lake
Jeff and Jim on a knoll in upper Houseblock Valley
The knoll is a part of a rock glacier that's a remnant
of the glacier that carved this dramatic valley
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