Find us on the Web

Local's Travel Guide to South Central Alaska!

At Paddle Sports by True North AK, we live and work in the beautiful Mat-Su Valley. Our family moved to Alaska in 2020 and we have spent the last few years exploring. As transplants to Alaska, we are happy to share some of our favorite spots we have found while being here! Check out our favorite spots in our free travel guide below. We are also happy to help answer your questions about Alaska, so feel free to reach out to us at 907-691-8909 or [email protected]


Derek and Heather 

Owners/ Operators  

Mat-Su Valley

An hour north of Anchorage

Take a guided Tour with us!

Are you wanting to have an adventure in Alaska but are not sure how? We are here to help!

Find your adventure today!

Rent a Paddle Craft

We have canoes, kayaks, and Stand Up Paddleboards for rent. Gear can be picked up in the Valley for free or delivered for a small fee. 

Rent a boat for the lake

Rent a can of Bear Spray

The TSA does not allow Bear Spray to fly on aircraft in the US. We have cans of Bear Spray for rent. $5 per day, for peace of mind out on the trails.
Places to Stay

The Glacier Breeze- Tucked away in the Knik River Valley, the Glacier Breeze cabin is surrounded by amazing 360° views of the breathtaking Chugach Mountains!

Scores B&B- Guests can expect a farm stay complete with farm animals, dirt, and garden workers of varying sizes of grandchildren. A piano studio complete with students is also happening during the winter months.

McKinley Birch Bed and Breakfast- Country log home. 8 miles from Palmer. Near the Bodenburg Butte. On the drive in you will see mountain vistas in nearly every direction. It’s beautiful.

Big Bear RV Park is family owned and operated. Our clean and friendly campground has much to offer the Alaskan traveler. Centrally located in the heart of the Mat-Su Valley, just a few miles from both the cities of Palmer and Wasilla, (and only 37 miles from Anchorage). We provide a great location to set up and set out on day trips to explore the surrounding areas. Our park is a destination must for visitors and locals who wish to get out whether you’re RV or tent camping or needing a cabin getaway.

Wild Habitat Alaska 

Hi there! I’m Kelly Nelius, owner of Wild Habitat LLC, a short term rental management business in Palmer, Alaska. 

I’m an Alaskan transplant who moved up to the Palmer and the Mat-Su Valley, Alaska with a young family nearly 15 years ago. In addition to running Wild Habitat LLC, I’m also a real estate licensee working with Valley Market Real Estate. I would be honored to have you stay in one of my vacation home rentals! 

Favorite Lakes

Finger Lake State Park-camping, swimming, boating, the start of the 7-mile canoe trip, picnics, watching planes

Wasilla Lake– shallow and warm water lake with a playground, great for family and for an afternoon paddle.

Reflections Lake easy, one-mile walk around a lake, climb a tower overlooking the marshlands and the Knik Arm


Thunderbird Falls fairly easy hike to the falls, you can stop at the overlook or continue to the base of the falls.

Old Glenn Hwy Bridge– walk along the old bridge and get views of the river and surrounding area, use caution with little ones since the rails are missing

Butte amazing views of the valley, river, and glacier in the distance, doable with little ones just take your time on the stairs and don’t give up.

Hatcher’s Pass Beautiful views, waterfalls, Summit Lake fishing or paddling, not a place to swim without a dry suit, paragliding, hikes, play in the snow, berry picking in the fall, Little Sustina River is super blue.


Independence Mine– Gold mine in Hatcher’s Pass, old buildings and artifacts, hikes, gift shop, pan for gold

Sutton– has a park with a history of coal mining and some artifacts

Iditarod Museum– Along the KGB, small display and gift shop

Eklutna Cemetery and native village– wander around the spirit houses, and learn a little about the first Russian settlers and the natives they merged with.

Palmer Museum– wander around the spirit houses, and learn a little about the first Russian settlers and the natives they merged with.


Reindeer Farm in Butte, we have not been but we are told you can pet moose and reindeer

Musk Ox Farm- in Palmer, a guided walking tour to see the Musk Ox and learn about them

Pyrah Farm pick your own vegetables and see farm animals