Alaska: Denali to Prince William Sound

  • An immersive expedition from Alaska’s wild interior to the coast
  • Explore Denali National Park, Prince William Sound, and historic villages

Expedition Details

 

Encounter majestic landscapes and diverse wildlife on an expedition into the heart of Alaska’s untouched wilderness. Experience the rugged beauty of Denali National Park on naturalist-led excursions, and search for moose, caribou, wolves, grizzly bears, and Dall sheep. Hike amid the soaring peaks of the Alaska Range and journey along the stunningly scenic Seward Highway. Cap off your adventure with a cruise on Prince William Sound, home to humpback whales and towering tidewater glaciers.

Trip Highlights

    • Explore Alaska’s rolling tundra and taiga forests, spotting an array of wildlife, including caribou, moose, wolves, and Dall sheep.
    • Immerse yourself in the pristine wilderness of Denali National Park on a variety of hikes, taking in views of the mountain that gave the park its name.
    • Cruise through spectacular Prince William Sound to spot humpback whales and orcas, and experience the thunder of calving glaciers.
    • Stay in private cabins in the heart of Denali, and at a mountain resort surrounded by snow-dusted glaciers and peaks.

Itinerary - 7 Days

Day 1 — Fairbanks, Alaska/Denali National Park

Arrive in Fairbanks, and travel south through taiga forests to Denali National Park. Then drive into the heart of this pristine wilderness in search of moose, caribou, gray wolves, grizzly bears, and Dall sheep. Arrive at our remote lodge in the former mining settlement of Kantishna, surrounded by glacier-fed, braided rivers and the peaks of the Alaska Range.
Denali Backcountry Lodge (L,D)

Days 2 & 3 — Denali National Park

Spend the next two days exploring Denali’s magnificent interior. Set out on hikes or walks of varying degrees of difficulty or try panning for gold. While in the park, keep your eye out for migrating birds, including golden plovers, arctic loons, jaegers, and eagles. Weather permitting, take an optional flightseeing trip around Mount McKinley, North America’s highest mountain, or hike to viewpoints to photograph its soaring 20,320-foot peak.
Denali Backcountry Lodge (B, L, D daily)

Day 4 — Denali/Talkeetna

Take advantage of an early morning drive out of the park to catch wildlife during one of its most active periods. Then head to Talkeetna on the Denali Star train, and explore this historic Alaska village which serves as a launching point for climbers of Mount McKinley.
Talkeetna Alaskan Lodge (B,L)

Day 5 — Talkeetna/Girdwood

This morning, drive south of Anchorage along the stunningly scenic Seward Highway, past Turnagain Arm and the snowcapped Chugach mountains, which seem to rise out of the mirrored waters of Cook Inlet. This is part of a route that National Geographic has named one of its “Drives of a Lifetime.” Continue to the scenic town of Girdwood, and explore this glacial valley on a hike through lush rain forest.
Hotel Alyeska (B,L,D)

Day 6 — Prince William Sound

Embark on a day cruise on Prince William Sound, where the rich waters attract a variety of wildlife, from humpback whales and orcas to playful sea otters, puffins, and seals. Against a spectacular mountain backdrop, glide past towering tidewater glaciers, and listen for the telltale crackle and boom of impending glacier calving. Later this evening, celebrate your Alaska adventure with a farewell dinner.
Hotel Alyeska (B,L,D)

Day 7 — Girdwood/Anchorage

Enjoy up-close encounters with Alaska’s wild residents at the Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center, which rehabilitates injured and orphaned animals to the wild. After lunch, return to Anchorage and connect with your flight home.
(B,L)

Related Trips

National Geographic Expert

Jason Matthews

Jason MatthewsCalled an "encyclopedia" by the New York Times, Jason is a professional naturalist, environmental educator, and guide who has been leading trips throughout the Northern Rockies for nearly 20 years. He majored in anthropology at Montana State University and is a certified Master Naturalist through the University of Montana, specializing in wolf and bear ecology. Jason is an instructor at Montana State University and an outfitter and guide who leads dog sled trips and river expeditions. He has led backcountry trips in Alaska, which he calls one of his favorite destinations. Jason works with NatGeo Wild's Casey Anderson as a location scout, wildlife tracker, and expedition planner for the show America the Wild.

Jason will join the following departures:

Aug 25 - Sep 01, 2015
Sep 06 - 13, 2015

SEE OTHER EXPERTS »

Dates

2015
  • Jun 13 - 20, 2015 ALT
  • Jul 19 - 26, 2015 ALT (waitlist only)
  • Jul 28 - Aug 04, 2015 ALT (waitlist only)
  • Aug 25 - Sep 01, 2015 ALT
  • Sep 06 - 13, 2015 ALT

ALT indicates a departure that has a slightly different itinerary than the one shown on this page. Click the ALT icon to see the day-to-day itinerary.

Expedition Cost

2015

$5,695

Price is per person, double occupancy. For a single room, add $1,100 in 2014 and $1,400 in 2015.

Airfare to Fairbanks and from Anchorage, and the optional flightseeing trip around Mount McKinley are not included in the expedition cost.

What To Expect

This expedition is designed to accommodate guests at different activity levels. In Denali, guests can choose easy, moderate, or challenging hikes each day, ranging from one to nine miles.