One of Alaska's top cross-country ski trail systems is celebrating this winter's accumulation of snow, and skiers are flocking to the Government Peak Recreation Area at the base of Hatcher Pass for world-class conditions. Those looking for pristine conditions, spectacular views and gorgeous scenery should make sure to check out Government Peak this winter.

The Government Peak Recreation Area trail system is one of the Mat-Su Valley's jewels for winter recreation. Nestled in the Talkeetna Mountains, there are 7.5 kilometers of trails groomed frequently by the Mat-Su Ski Club. The trail system was designed by former U.S. Olympian Bill Spencer, and was constructed in 2013. This winter, the frequent snow has made conditions ideal for cross-country skiing. For current grooming and trail conditions, visit before heading out.

In addition to performing trail grooming and maintenance, the Mat-Su Ski Club also offers a Northern Lights Series community race series every Wednesday night at 7 p.m. Racers can choose from 1.5, 2.5 and 5 kilometer distances, and the entry fee is only $5 per person ($10 per family). The facility is also used by local high school cross-country ski teams.

The ski trails are just one part of the Government Peak Recreation Area. In total, there are more than 7,000 acres dedicated to winter and summer non-motorized activities, including mountain biking, skijoring, hiking and more. The chalet at Government Peak is a 4,000 square foot facility that is ideal for weddings, corporate retreats and events.

To get to Government Peak Recreation Area from the Wasilla side, take Wasilla-Fishhook Road until it meets with Palmer-Fishhook Road (take Palmer-Fishhook Road if coming via Palmer). Take a left on Edgerton Parks Road and go one mile until you turn right on North Mountain Trails Road. The chalet and parking area are adjacent to the trailhead.