National Park Travel Guide: National Parks Anchorage Alaska For You Van Vleck

Step By StepAlaska Trip On Motorcycle

 

Below are a few 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 drift plane, there is lots 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 National Park is one of the simplest places to access it. The north-flowing, glacier-fed Nenana River parallels the Parks Freeway by the national park entrance, and operators typically run two trips on it: the mellow, scenic McKinley Run, and the quicker Canyon Run, including 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 can be another popular on-the-water activity. There are trout in the streams, trout in the lakes, and huge 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 9 hours. You’re likely to see sea otters, puffins, bald eagles, seals, sea lions, whales and maybe even a bear, along with the calving glaciers, rookery islands, 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 guideline.

Alaska is a land of backcountry, settled by people that hiked out, discovered a piece of ground that looked good and built a family log cabin on it. You can get a sense of the vastness of the land by going on your own backcountry trek. Denali is a great place for it — the National Recreation area covers more than 2 million hectares and has relatively few established trails. You will find endless opportunities intended for shorter hikes in southcentral and interior Alaska as well.

Regardless of how long you’re on the trail, it’s all set with a guide. Having a company like Ak Nature Guides, you’ll be led by a local, someone who blazed their own path and made a home in the bush. Their information about the property, its history and its particular flora and fauna will add layers of meaning to a hike you won’t get otherwise.

ANG is certainly one of few companies with Gold Level Certification in the experience Green Alaska system, which recognizes them as an industry innovator in environmentally and culturally sustainable procedures. They run well guided hikes in Denali State Park (east of and adjacent to the National Park), as well as around Talkeetna Lakes Park, simply outside of town.

Look at of Denali Country wide Park
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View of Denali National Recreation area
Flickr/Blmiers2
More information
Ak Nature Guides
Adventure Green Alaska

3. Fly to the mountains; climb if you can.

The Alaska Range defines the topography of the state, a crescent spine that figure from the southeastern border 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, may be the area surrounding Denali, North America’s tallest peak at 6, 193. 5 metres, and its two neighbors, Foraker (5, 303. 5 meters) and Hunter (4, 256. 5 meters).

Getting the view is definitely nice; one of the best locations to do so is in 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” trips out of Talkeetna, K2 Aviation getting the biggest. It’s also possible to journey in from the Denali area. Whoever you fly with, subscribe to a glacier landing for the full impact.

This is also just how climbers access the mountains. For information on climbing, check the National Park’s mountaineering resource page.

A float plane in Alaska

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

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

Fox Island is usually a stop on two Kenai Fjords time cruises, but you can stay overnight at the Kenai Fjords Wilderness Villa. The property comprises 8 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 day time cruise on reduction day start can be found. Kayaking and angling trips are available at additional cost for overnighters; they’re part of the offer if you stay several night.

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On the opposite side of the Kenai Peninsula, Tutka Bay Lodge has an even more remote feel to it, accessed by water taxi in the 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 cold peaks and Sitka spruce-covered ridges that run right into the ocean. The villa is set back on a 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 lodge building and six luxury cabins of varying size. The Eagle’s Nest Chalet (sleeps five) most likely has the best look at.

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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 well guided activity you can think of – kayaking, hiking to glaciers, mountain bicycling, local fishing and boat trips, character walks, and cooking food classes.

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