TALKEETNA & MT. MCKINLEY: Begin your escorted adventure with a meet & greet of other guests. A visit to the Native Heritage Center, will expose you to many native cultures in one location. Learn the ways of the elders and watch as native dancers share their culture. Continue on to the Matanuska Valley, the farming belt of Alaska, with a visit of the native village of Eklutna. Enjoy the Russian Orthodox influenced Chapel and native influenced spirit houses, sharing their cultural traditions. Continuing north, we will pass the Palmer Hay Flats, and the Knik Arm of the Cook Inlet. This tundra area is home to wildlife and several species of birds.
Visit the home of the Iditarod. Race Headquarters expose you to the lure of the dog sleds of the past. Meet an Iditarod musher and dog team and share in the thrill of the race, as you take a ride on a summer dog sled ride around a quarter acre track. Next you will view inland scenery as you continue on to Talkeetna, a local town sporting the most photographed scenes in our state, including the towering peaks of Mt. McKinley or Denali & the Alaska mountain range. Only 1 ½ hours north, this town is a hub of international mountain climbers. Here you will have the day to visit the local town folks, stop in the shops, visit local museums or choose from an array of activities. Today’s adventure includes a riverboat trip as follows:
2-Hour Riverboat Adventure
Your exciting trip will begin aboard the fifty-one passenger “Talkeetna Queen” as it whisks you into the heart of the wilderness in comfort. This is the most technologically advanced river jetboat in Alaska designed to safely navigate rivers that were previously inaccessible. It is glass-domed, environmentally controlled, and has an onboard restroom for your comfort. Upon arriving at our Safari sight you will take a 1/4 mile leisurely nature walk. You will visit an authentic trapper’s cabin and view how trappers lived in “Bush” Alaska at the turn of the century. Your experienced guide will display raw furs from the local area and demonstrate trapping methods. Naturalists will acquaint you with the wildflowers and plants that grow in abundance along the river system and you will learn about the edible plants that were used by the Native Indians for cooking and medicines. As you travel ten miles of river you will have opportunities to view nesting bald eagles, beaver activity, and moose and you just might see black bear and grizzly bear roaming the shore. Wildlife, folklore, artifacts and a panoramic view of Denali in the Alaska Range combine to make this an unforgettable Alaskan river adventure.
You can also choose to upgrade today’s adventure and choose to flight see over Mt. McKinley with a glacier landing for $235 pp additional. See description below.
Denali Flightseeing & Glacier Landing
This magnificent flight takes you within six miles of Mt. McKinley’s summit. As your flight departs Talkeetna, you begin to see how the last ice age has shaped the land. Moments later you enter a world of rugged high mountain peaks and wide glacier filled valleys. Listen as your pilot describes the natural wonders of Denali National Park. See the Sheldon Amphitheater, beautiful Ruth Glacier, and the Great Gorge (the world’s deepest – almost 2 miles from top to bottom). “No visit is complete without this experience!” Land on the Sheldon Amphitheater glacier beneath Mt. McKinley. The aircraft are equipped with skis, floats, and voice activated headphones. Passengers, each with comfortable window seats, enjoy narration by an experienced pilot-guide highlighting points of interest including geology, wildlife, and history. Flight time is 1.5 hrs and includes a glacier landing. Upgrades for longer flights can be purchased.
This evening enjoy infamous salmon or halibut at a Lakeview Inn in Wasilla. Overnight in Chalet lodging. (B)
View our preferred accommodations for this area:
Palmer Wasilla Mat-Valley Lodging