BEST OF WILD ALASKA

About the Experience

Alaska’s landscape has forever enchanted the imagination of adventurers and nature lovers. Your heart will open to mountain ranges, braided rivers that weave into the horizon, cascading waterfalls, and the rugged valleys teeming with colour! 

 

Prepare for an active multisport adventure as you explore this wild place in all of its angles. Your Wild Women guide will take you on a journey that glimpses every feature Alaska has to offer. Explore Prince William Sound from the cockpit of your sea kayak, don crampons and climb glacier ice in the Matanuska Valley, and board a floatplane for a spectacular flight into Denali National Park, where you will hike and camp in the shadow of Denali, the highest mountain in North America! Sheep, Grizzly bears, moose, caribou, and other animals are native to the Denali area and are a treat to see!

In the evenings, enjoy the comfort of Alaska’s most famous lodges and tent camping at our remote Denali basecamp. From almost anywhere in Alaska, on the right day, you can view the Aurora Borealis, or Northern Lights. So look up at the sky and dream about the vast wilderness as you sleep under the stars in this awe-inspiring setting.

Actively experience the “real” Alaska on our Best Of Wild Alaska Adventure!

 

 

 

 

Did you know we’re a global leader in women’s adventure travel? Check out our destinations around the world!

 

Click here to see the full itinerary!
BEST OF WILD ALASKA

About the Experience

Alaska’s landscape has forever enchanted the imagination of adventurers and nature lovers. Your heart will open to mountain ranges, braided rivers that weave into the horizon, cascading waterfalls, and the rugged valleys teeming with colour! 

 

Prepare for an active multisport adventure as you explore this wild place in all of its angles. Your Wild Women guide will take you on a journey that glimpses every feature Alaska has to offer. Explore Prince William Sound from the cockpit of your sea kayak, don crampons and climb glacier ice in the Matanuska Valley, and board a floatplane for a spectacular flight into Denali National Park, where you will hike and camp in the shadow of Denali, the highest mountain in North America! Sheep, Grizzly bears, moose, caribou, and other animals are native to the Denali area and are a treat to see!

In the evenings, enjoy the comfort of Alaska’s most famous lodges and tent camping at our remote Denali basecamp. From almost anywhere in Alaska, on the right day, you can view the Aurora Borealis, or Northern Lights. So look up at the sky and dream about the vast wilderness as you sleep under the stars in this awe-inspiring setting.

Actively experience the “real” Alaska on our Best Of Wild Alaska Adventure!

 

 

 

 

Did you know we’re a global leader in women’s adventure travel? Check out our destinations around the world!

 

DAY ONE: ARRIVALS

Your adventure begins in the heart of Anchorage, Alaska! You can arrive any time and transfer to your hotel independently, or coordinate with your Wild Women guide for a complimentary transfer. Depending on your arrival time, the remainder of the day is yours to relax after your flight or to explore some of the city’s notable sites, including the Anchorage Museum of History & Art or the city Park Strip.

  • Meals: Not included 

 



DAY TWO: LION’S HEAD

This morning, you’ll meet your wild women guides at the hotel at 8 am for an orientation and gear check. Then we’ll make the 3-hour drive north along the Glen Highway past the mighty Matanuska Glacier. Just past the glacier, we’ll stop for a short but steep hike up the Lion’s Head.

The Lion’s head is a geologic feature called a rôche moutonnée, a rock feature created by the passing of a glacier. The views of the Matanuska Glacier and the surrounding Chugach mountains are amazing.

By late afternoon, we’ll check into our lodge for the night, where comfortable rooms include stunning views of the Talkeetna and Chugach mountain ranges.

  • Meals: Lunch, Dinner
  • Hiking Distance: 5 km or 3 miles
  • Elevation Gain: 300m or 1000’
  • Mileage: ~175 km or ~ 109 mi

 

 

DAY THREE: GLACIER ADVENTURE

Today you’ll meet your glacier guides, strap on crampons and ice axes, and spend the day ice climbing on the mighty Matanuska Glacier. 

Designed for just about everyone, this glacier adventure is suitable for beginners and experts alike. At over 27 miles long,  the Matanuska Glacier is the largest glacier accessible by car in the United States. From its origins in the highest peaks of Alaska’s Chugach Mountains, the Matanuska is fed by incessant winter storms that dump more than 100 inches of snow each year in the Chugach. From the moment you step onto the base of the glacier, expert guides will begin by teaching you the basics on moderate slopes, and by the end of the day, you’ll be scaling vertical walls of ice!

We’ll celebrate our adventure at dinner tonight with an amazing meal at the lodge or another restaurant in the vicinity.

  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch
  • Ice Climbing: 6 hours

 

 

DAY FOUR: MOUNTAINS AND MORAINES

Wake up, empowered! After breakfast at the lodge, we’ll load into the van and continue our way through the magnificent Chugach Mountains en route to our next lodge in the heart of the spectacular Thompson Pass. Continuing south, views of Alaska’s Chugach Mountains, the Wrangell Mountains, and the Alaska Range will inspire us along the way. 

We’ll make a stop for a hike and picnic near the Worthington Glacier. The Worthington, a Natural Historic Landmark, is a spectacular glacier that tumbles from the Chugach Mountains, and our hike will take us up a sweeping moraine with stunning scenes of blue ice, crevasses of the glacier, and vistas of the mighty Chugach. 

Continuing north, views of Alaska’s Chugach Mountains, the Wrangell Mountains, and the Alaska Range cradle the landscape. By late afternoon, we’ll check into our accommodations in Valdez.

  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
  • Driving Distance: ~305 km or ~ 190 mi
  • Hiking Distance: up to 5 km or 3 miles
  • Elevation Gain: up to 400m or 1300’

 

 

DAY FIVE: SHOUP BY KAYAKING

We spend today sea kayaking in Shoup Bay! After a thorough kayaking orientation and a 1⁄2 hour water taxi ride, you’ll hop into a sea protected body of water.

We’ll kayak by the largest Black Legged Kittiwake rookery in Prince William Sound and lunch near the foot of an ancient tidewater glacier. Sea kayaking among the floating miniature icebergs makes for a fun obstacle course to test your paddling skills, as does riding the connecting stream’s swift current on an outgoing tide!

Tonight, you’re free to enjoy dinner on your own at one of Valdez’s many restaurants. This walkable town offers many options, just steps from your hotel.

  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

 

 

DAY SIX: DENALI

Prepare to set flight! After an early breakfast, we’ll make our way down to the ferry terminal to board an Alaska State Ferry for the cruise to Whittier. The crossing of Prince William Sound will take you past Black Legged Kittiwake rookeries, near the faces of large tidewater glaciers. From Whittier, we’ll travel by van to Anchorage along the Seward Highway and the Turnagain Arm of Cook Inlet, one of the world’s most scenic drives. Beluga whales cruise the arm’s waters and glaciers cling to the rugged mountains of the Chugach Range.

Once in Anchorage, we’ll have a quick trip orientation and gear check before boarding a floatplane bound for the wilderness of Denali National Park! Your home for the next three nights. We’ll fly over alpine tundra, braided rivers, and cascading waterfalls near Denali Mountain, the highest peak in North America. We’ll also edge towards the mighty gorge of the Ruth Glacier, the deepest trench on earth!

Your skilled bush pilot will take you down to a small lake nestled in a cleft between the Ruth and Tokositna Glaciers, where our group will unload the gear on a small beach and wave goodbye to the airplane.

We’ll set up camp just beyond the lake, bask in the newfound solitude, and take a short early evening hike before dinner.

  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
  • Distance: ~2.5 km or 1.5 miles
  • Elevation Gain: minimal – up to 30m or 100’

 

 

 

DAY SEVEN: PEAKS AND VALLEYS

Today, with almost unlimited daylight, we’ll head for the tundra hills above camp, destined for magnificent views of the Backside Glacier, Ruth Glacier, and if weather permits, “The Great One,” 20,320 foot Denali Mountain.

On today’s hike, we’ll practise the skills necessary to hike off-trail in the Alaska wilderness – including reading topographic maps, choosing the best route, using trekking poles, and travelling efficiently.

After a full day of exploration, you’ll tally your wildlife and mountain peak sightings as you enjoy a filling meal in the wilderness.

  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
  • Distance: 13-16 km or 8-10 miles
  • Elevation Gain: 450-750m or 1500’-2500’

 

 

DAY EIGHT: BACKSIDE GLACIER

After a hearty breakfast, grab your day-pack and head out in search of adventure in Denali.

Today, we make our way up onto the Backside Glacier. With the sheer size of the surrounding glaciers, you’ll quickly understand why this area draws mountaineers from all over the world! While not at all technical, our trek on the ice will give you the chance to see firsthand the glacial features of this frozen river of ice, the valley that bears the scars of thousands of years of glacial activity, and the more recent visual indications of climate change on the Alaska landscape.

  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
  • Distance: 13-16 km or 8-10 miles
  • Elevation Gain: 450-750m or 1500’-2500’

 

 
DAY NINE: UP AND AWAY

Breakfast and a hot drink will fuel us for our last few hours in the wilderness! After breaking camp and moving our kit to the lakeshore, we’ll await our ride back to civilization. As the floatplane descends on the Lake, we’ll depart, knowing that this amazing place has made a lasting impact on our souls.

We’ll return to Anchorage by early afternoon; occasionally, weather conditions prevent our groups from flying out of Denali on this final day. Therefore, we strongly suggest spending this night in Anchorage and booking your return flights for the next day or later.

  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

 

Please note that occasionally weather conditions prevent us from flying into and out of Denali National Park. If the weather isn’t flyable on the afternoon/ evening of Day 6 from Anchorage, we will continue north in the van to Talkeetna, Alaska. We will camp along the Talkeetna River. Our itinerary plan allows for a full-day of wait time in Talkeetna where our partner air service also has a floatplane. If we aren’t able to fly into Denali National Park by the afternoon of the next day (day 7), we will shift to the contingency itinerary.

*While Wild Women Expeditions endeavours to follow our itineraries as written, odds are, in fact, slim that you actually will during the camping portion of this trip. The expeditionary factors at play quite often compel our guides to deviate from the written itinerary. Guide considerations could include weather conditions, group preference, individual ability, specific safety considerations, or unforeseeable circumstances; collectively, what many have called “The Alaska Factor.” Flight times into and out of the wilderness may also vary based on any number of similar factors. Therefore we strongly suggest that you approach any adventure in Alaska with an open mind!

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