The Ultimate Guide ToMap Of National Parks Alaska
Here are a few 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 some of them here.
1 . Get on the water.
The state is full of whitewater, and Denali Country wide Park is one of the simplest places to access this. The north-flowing, glacier-fed Nenana River parallels the Parks Highway by the national park entrance, and workers typically run two trips on it: the mellow, scenic McKinley Run, and the faster Canyon Run, which includes 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 another popular on-the-water activity. There are salmon in the streams, trout in the lakes, and list halibut and cod out at sea.
A wildife/glacier-viewing time cruise out of Seward is also enjoyable. The Ak Native-owned Kenai Fjords Tours offers a couple of different routes, from four to nine hours. You’re more likely to see sea otters, puffins, bald silver eagles, seals, sea lions, whales and maybe a bear, along with the calving glaciers, rookery destinations, and shoreline highs of Resurrection Gulf.
Rafting the Nenana River
Denali Raft Adventures
Kenai Fjords Tours
2. Hike with a guideline.
Alaska is a land of backcountry, settled by folks who hiked out, found a piece of ground that looked good and built a family cabin on it. You can get a feeling 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. There are endless opportunities to get shorter hikes in southcentral and interior Alaska as well.
Regardless of how long you’re within the trail, it’s all set with a guide. With a company like Alaska Nature Guides, you’ll be led by a local, someone who blazed their own trail and made a home in the bush. Their insights about the property, its history and its particular flora and fauna will add layers of meaning to a hike you won’t obtain otherwise.
ANG is usually one of few businesses with Gold Level Certification in the experience Green Alaska system, which recognizes all of them as an industry innovator in environmentally and culturally sustainable procedures. They run led hikes in Denali State Park (east of and next to the National Park), as well as around Talkeetna Lakes Park, just outside of town.
View of Denali State Park
View of Denali National Recreation area
Alaska Nature Guides
Adventure Green Alaska
3. Fly to the mountains; climb if you can.
The Alaska Range describes the topography of the state, a crescent spine that curves from the southeastern border with Canada, up to just south of Fairbanks, and back down to the sea in the mouth of Cook Inlet. The section most people know and visit, though, may be the area surrounding Denali, North America’s highest peak at 6, 193. 5 metres, and its two neighbors, Foraker (5, 303. 5 meters) and Hunter (4, 256. 5 meters).
Catching the view can be nice; one of the best areas to do so is from the back deck part of the Talkeetna Alaskan Resort. But you get an entirely 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” tours 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 getting for the full effect.
This is also how climbers access the forest. For information on climbing, check the National Park’s mountaineering useful resource page.
A drift plane in Alaska
Talkeetna Alaskan Lodge
K2 Modern aviation
Denali National Park Mountaineering Resource Page
4. Stay at a boat/plane-accessed lodge.
Fox Island is definitely a stop on two Kenai Fjords time cruises, but you can stay overnight at the Kenai Fjords Wilderness Hotel. The property comprises 8 cabins (each with capacity for a family of four) lined up between rocky beach as well as the back tidal lagoon. Package overnight remains that feature a time cruise on departure day start are available. Kayaking and fishing trips are available at extra cost for overnighters; they’re part of the offer if you stay more than one night.
On the reverse side of the Kenai Peninsula, Tutka Bay Lodge has an much more remote feel to it, accessed simply by water taxi from your Homer Spit or sea plane. Tutka is one of the fjords cut into the southern part of the larger Kachemak Bay, and the entire area features arctic peaks and Sitka spruce-covered ridges that run right into the ocean. The lodge is set back on a beach opposite a small headland – you can not see it until you’re almost on top of it. But once you’re there it’s quite expansive, with a massive central deck (with hot tub and sauna), and pathways that connect the main villa building and 6 luxury cabins of varying size. The Eagle’s Nest Chalet (sleeps five) probably has the best look at.
Rates start $1, 300 per night time and include three chef-prepared meals a day, a one-hour massage, wine tastings, yoga, and pretty much any led activity you can think of — kayaking, hiking to glaciers, mountain biking, local fishing and boat trips, character walks, and cooking classes.