Bertha Creek Campground

By Ryan Wilson

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Bertha Creek Campground

Bertha Creek Campground is a quiet, primitive campground located on Alaska’s Kenai Peninsula.

Even though Alaska campgrounds can book up months in advance during the summer, Bertha Creek doesn’t offer reservations, so you’re likely to find a site if you arrive earlier enough during the day.

I’ve driven by Bertha Creek Campground for years, but never explored the campground. That changed recently when we finally drove in and checked it out.

Below I provide an overview of Bertha Creek Campground, what it has to offer, what the best campsite are, and other information to help you decide whether this campground is the right fit for you.


Bertha Creek Campground Review

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Bertha Creek Campground is a small, primitive campground near Turnagain Pass in the Chugach National Forest. Sites cost $19 per night.

It is situated a few hundred feet off the Seward Highway, but I was surprised how little road noise you could hear at the campground especially with the creek running nearby.

The campsites have good spacing between them, but there isn’t a ton of privacy between sites.

The campground offers nice views of the surrounding mountains but not quite as nice as the nearby Granite Creek Campground.

The campground itself doesn’t offer a ton of activities like others in the area . But if you’re looking for a relaxing weekend hanging around a campfire, Bertha Creek Campground is a good option!

Campsites

Bertha Creek Campground has 12 campsites which can accommodate smaller camping trailers and smaller RVs. It is a tiny campground, so larger trailers or RVs will have trouble navigating the tight campground loop.

Each campsite has a picnic table and campfire pit.

There are no strictly walk-in sites, but obviously any campsite can be used by non-motorized campers.

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In my opinion, campsite 3 is the best because it backs directly up to the creek.

Amenities

Bertha Creek Campground is a very primitive campground with few amenities, but has everything you need for a weekend of camping. On a recent trip to the campground, I didn’t notice any campground host present, so you’re largely left on your own here.

Bertha Creek Campground offers drinking water from a hand-pump. Although, the water pump was not operational when were there the first weekend in June.

There are also outhouses with pit toilets.

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There is also a dumpster for your trash. Please do not leave trash or food unsecured because both grizzly and black bears live in the area and could become problems if people don’t properly manage their camps.

There are no sewer, water, or electric hook-ups. There is also no cell phone coverage.

One feature lacking at Bertha Creek Campground are food storage lockers for keeping bears out of food. This isn’t a problem for people who have a car, RV, or camper. But if you’re strictly a tent camper without a vehicle, this could lead to a bad situation.

It’s uncommon for campers to arrive by foot at Bertha Creek Campground given it’s location, but it just seems like a simple device to have at the campground just in case someone needs it.

Activities

At the campground, the primary draw is Granite and Bertha creeks. All campsites are a short walk from the creek

One of the fun activities you can do while camping at Berth Creek Campground is gold panning. The creek along the campground allows for recreational gold panning so it’s a lot of fun for the whole family. Gold panning is only allowed in Bertha Creek and is not allowed in Granite Creek.

The Johnson Pass Trail is a quick drive from the campground which offers a nice scenic hike or mountain biking. You can also take a short drive to the community of Hope, Alaska.

Reservations

No advanced reservations are required for Bertha Creek Campground. There are only first-come, first-serve sites. So, it can be a great location for a last-minute Alaskan camping trip because of how far in advance Alaskan campgrounds can get booked up.

When is Bertha Creek Campground Open

Bertha Creek Campground is open between Memorial Day and Labor Day annually.

Getting There

Bertha Creek Campground is located about 60 miles from Anchorage, with most of the drive occurring along the scenic Turnagain Arm. It takes approximately 1 hour and 10 minutes to get to the campground, but be prepared for delays because there tends to be a lot of construction along Alaska’s roadways in summer.

On your drive, be sure to look for beluga whales that follow the tides and hunt schools of fish. You might also see black bears, moose, Dall sheep, and many migratory birds along the way.

Turnagain Arm has one of the biggest bore tides in the world and it is quite impressive to watch! Keep your eyes peeled for kite and wind surfers who enjoy surfing the bore tides


Summary

I was surprised how cute Bertha Creek Campground is. It’s the perfect location for a last minute camping trip on the Kenai Peninsula given that it does not accept advanced reservations.

Even without a lot of activities at the the campground itself, you’re a short drive to Whittier or Seward where there are tons of activities to keep you entertained.

If you’re exploring the Kenai Peninsula, I recommend you check it out and see if it’s a good fit for you too.

Interested in learning more about other camping opportunities in Alaska? Check out our page on Alaska Campgrounds to learn about other campgrounds to explore.

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Author

Ryan is an avid outdoorsman who loves camping, hiking, and backpacking. He was initially reluctant to join the camper world, but after his first camping trip in one, he became a convert. He especially loves how camper ownership extends the camping season and makes it easier to be more adventurous with young kids. When not enjoying his free time, he works as a professional wildlife biologist studying the ecology and conservation of large mammals in Alaska.