National Park Travel Guide: Alaska Trip Tips For American ONLY Lizella

Complete Review:Alaska Trips 2019

 

Here are some recommendations of exactly where and how to spend your time in Alaska.
Whether it’s whitewater rafting in Denali National Park or taking in the views from a float plane, there is lots of adventure to be found in Alaska. Take a look at some of them here.

1 . Can get on the water.

The state is full of whitewater, and Denali National Park is one of the simplest places to access it. The north-flowing, glacier-fed Nenana River parallels the Parks Highway by the national recreation area entrance, and workers typically run two trips on it: the mellow, scenic McKinley Run, and the faster Canyon Run, which includes several class III 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 monster 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 some different routes, from four to nine hours. You’re very likely to see sea otters, puffins, bald silver eagles, seals, sea elephants, whales and maybe a bear, along with the calving glaciers, rookery island destinations, and shoreline peaks of Resurrection Gulf.

 

Rafting the Nenana River
Flickr/Katie Loehr
More information
Denali Raft Adventures
Kenai Fjords Tours

2. Hike with a guide.

Alaska is a land of backcountry, settled by people who hiked out, discovered a piece of ground that looked good and built a family vacation 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 Park covers more than two million hectares and has relatively few established trails. There are endless opportunities for shorter hikes in southcentral and interior Alaska as well.

Regardless how long you’re in the trail, it’s good to go 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 insights about the land, its history as well as flora and fauna will add layers of meaning to a walk you won’t get otherwise.

ANG is usually one of few businesses with Gold Level Certification in the experience Green Alaska program, which recognizes all of them as an industry leader in environmentally and culturally sustainable procedures. They run 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.

View of Denali National Park
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View of Denali National Recreation area
Flickr/Blmiers2
More information
Alaska 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 figure from the southeastern boundary with Canada, up to just south of Fairbanks, and down again to the sea at 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).

Getting the view is usually nice; one of the best places to do so is from the back deck area of the Talkeetna Alaskan Villa. 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” tours out of Talkeetna, K2 Aviation becoming the biggest. It’s also possible to fly 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 mountains. For information upon climbing, check the Country wide Park’s mountaineering reference page.

A drift plane in Ak

Flickr/RLevans
More information
Talkeetna Alaskan Lodge
K2 Aviators
Denali National Park Mountaineering Resource Web page

4. Stay in a boat/plane-accessed lodge.

Fox Island is definitely a stop on two Kenai Fjords day time cruises, but you can stay overnight at the Kenai Fjords Wilderness Resort. The property comprises eight cabins (each with capacity for a family of four) lined up involving the rocky beach as well as the back tidal lagoon. Package overnight stays that feature a time cruise on starting day start are available. Kayaking and angling trips are available at extra cost for overnighters; they’re part of the deal if you stay more than one night.

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On the reverse side of the Kenai Peninsula, Tutka Bay Lodge has an even more remote feel to it, accessed by water taxi from your 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 wintry peaks and Sitka spruce-covered ridges that run right into the ocean. The hotel is set back on the beach opposite a little headland – you can’t see it until you’re almost on top of this. 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 resort building and 6 luxury cabins of varying size. The Eagle’s Nest Chalet (sleeps five) probably has the best watch.

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Rates start $1, 300 per night and include three chef-prepared meals a day, a one-hour massage, wine tastings, yoga, and pretty much any guided activity you can think of – kayaking, hiking to glaciers, mountain cycling, local fishing and boat trips, character walks, and cooking food classes.

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