Step By Step With Pic:Alaska Motorcycle Trip Map
Here are some recommendations of where and how to spend your time in Alaska.
Whether it’s whitewater rafting in Denali National Park or taking in the sights from a drift plane, there is plenty of adventure to be found in Alaska. Take a look at a few of them here.
1 . Get on the water.
The state is full of whitewater, and Denali State Park is one of the easiest places to access it. The north-flowing, glacier-fed Nenana River parallels the Parks Freeway by the national recreation area entrance, and operators typically run two trips on it: the mellow, scenic McKinley Run, and the faster Canyon Run, including several class 3 and IV rapids. You can raft the Canyon with Denali Raft Adventures ($89, 2 hours) — you’ll appreciate the provided drysuit.
Fishing is usually another popular on-the-water activity. There are salmon in the streams, trout in the lakes, and huge halibut and cod out at sea.
A wildife/glacier-viewing day cruise out of Seward is also enjoyable. The Ak Native-owned Kenai Fjords Tours offers some different routes, from four to nine hours. You’re likely to see sea otters, puffins, bald silver eagles, seals, sea lions, whales and maybe even a bear, along with the calving glaciers, rookery destinations, and shoreline highs of Resurrection Bay.
Rafting the Nenana River
Denali Raft Adventures
Kenai Fjords Tours
2. Hike with a guide.
Alaska is a land of backcountry, settled by people who hiked out, found a piece of ground that looked good and built a family log cabin on it. You can get a sense of the vastness from the land by going on your own backcountry trek. Denali is a good place for it – the National Recreation area covers more than 2 million hectares and has relatively few established trails. You will find endless opportunities meant for shorter hikes in southcentral and interior Alaska as well.
Regardless how long you’re on the trail, it’s all set with a guide. Having a company like Alaska Nature Guides, you’ll be led by a local, someone who blazed their own path and made a home in the bush. Their observations about the property, its history and it is flora and fauna will add layers of meaning to a hike you won’t get otherwise.
ANG can be one of few companies with Gold Level Certification in the Adventure Green Alaska plan, which recognizes all of them as an industry leader in environmentally and culturally sustainable procedures. They run well guided hikes in Denali State Park (east of and next to the National Park), as well as around Talkeetna Lakes Park, just outside of town.
Look at of Denali Country wide Park
View of Denali National Park
Ak Nature Guides
Experience Green Alaska
3. Fly to the mountains; climb if you can.
The Alaska Range identifies the topography from the state, a crescent spine that curves from the southeastern border with Canada, up to just south of Fairbanks, and down again to the sea on the mouth of Make Inlet. The section most people know and visit, though, is the area surrounding Denali, North America’s tallest peak at six, 193. 5 meters, and its two neighbours, Foraker (5, 303. 5 meters) and Hunter (4, 256. 5 meters).
Catching the view can be nice; one of the best places to do so is from the back deck area of the Talkeetna Alaskan Resort. But you get a completely different perspective once you’re actually in the mountains, standing on a glacier, looking up and around at a jagged world of white. To do that, you will need a plane.
A handful of businesses run “flightseeing” travels out of Talkeetna, K2 Aviation being the biggest. It’s also possible to soar in from the Denali area. Whoever you fly with, sign up for a glacier landing for the full impact.
This is also just how climbers access the forest. For information on climbing, check the Country wide Park’s mountaineering resource page.
A drift plane in Alaska
Talkeetna Alaskan Lodge
K2 Modern aviation
Denali National Park Mountaineering Resource Page
4. Stay in a boat/plane-accessed resort.
Fox Island is definitely a stop on two Kenai Fjords day time cruises, but you can stay overnight at the Kenai Fjords Wilderness Lodge. The property comprises eight cabins (each with capacity for a family of four) lined up between your rocky beach and the back tidal lagoon. Package overnight stays that feature a day time cruise on leaving day start can be found. Kayaking and angling trips are available at extra cost for overnighters; they’re part of the offer if you stay more than one night.
On the opposite side of the Kenai Peninsula, Tutka Gulf Lodge has an even more remote feel to it, accessed by water taxi through the Homer Spit or sea plane. Tutka is one of the fjords cut into the southern aspect of the larger Kachemak Bay, and the whole area features cold peaks and Sitka spruce-covered ridges that run right into the ocean. The resort is set back on a beach opposite a little headland – you can not see it until you’re almost on top of this. But once you’re there it’s quite expansive, with a substantial central deck (with hot tub and sauna), and pathways that connect the main lodge building and six luxury cabins of varying size. The Eagle’s Nest Chalet (sleeps five) most likely has the best watch.
Rates start $1, 300 per evening and include three chef-prepared meals a day, a one-hour massage, wines tastings, yoga, and pretty much any guided activity you can think of – kayaking, hiking to glaciers, mountain biking, local fishing and boat trips, nature walks, and cooking food classes.