Girdwood //Glacier hiking • Alpine hiking • Temperate Rainforest • Turnagain Arm views • Spencer Glacier
Walk in the wild places of Alaska with experienced and friendly guides who will reveal the wonders of our local rainforests, alpine inclines, glaciers, or the far backcountry. Trusted by locals, Hollywood producers, and even the White House, Ascending Path guides you expertly to select areas just minutes from Anchorage.
May - September
After just a 15-minute drive, you can take a gentle hike up close to Exit Glacier and see the beautiful dense blue ice. Walk the lower trail (an easy half-mile) to get a good photo in front of the glacier face. The trail also provides access for people with disabilities.
Want a hands-on exploration of Denali National Park, rather than just watching the landscape glide by your tour bus window? Join a small-group hiking tour guided by the company's trained naturalists. There are three hikes to choose from; Triple Lakes Trail, Rock Creek, and Steps Through Time.
Forget the trailhead on your next hike. Instead, take a short but very scenic helicopter ride to a special wilderness area just outside Denali National Park and start your trek from there. Your guide will lead your small group on a soft-adventure hike above the tree line, with sweeping views. You’ll learn about identifying animal tracks and the local flora and fauna, and of course have the opportunity to spot wildlife like bears, moose, and Dall sheep. If you’ve never gone heli-hiking before, now is the time to try it out.
Talkeetna //Denali State Park • Scenic lakes • Possible Wildlife sightings • Denali (McKinley) views on clear days
Explore Alaska on foot—take a scenic day hike into the South Denali area. Choose one of 3 great hikes; from an easy, 2-mile stroll to a moderately strenuous 5½-hour hike. You’ll get spectacular views and see plenty of wildlife as you trek with your experienced naturalist guide. Depending on the hike you may pass pristine lakes, see an old pioneer’s cabin, catch a glimpse of Mt. McKinley, and even have the chance to spot foraging bears. These hikes are a prime opportunity to get up close with Alaska’s natural beauty.
Get a unique view of the Alaskan wilderness on a four- or seven-day backpacking trip through the backcountry. You’ll be trekking on Kesugi Ridge in Denali State Park, with magnificent views of Mt. McKinley and of course plenty of wildlife to spot along the way. Your experienced naturalist guide will be with you the whole way, cooking up great meals at your campsites. You should be fit enough to carry a pack up moderate hills, though you’ll sometimes be dropping it off for side hikes to explore secret spots with your guide.
Go hiking in the Alaskan wilderness, but bookend your hike with a spectacular helicopter ride. Lift off from Talkeetna for a short, scenic flight into the boreal forest around town. Then get ready to start hiking with your experienced naturalist guide. You’ll get great views of Denali, the Alaska Range, and countless mountain peaks as you walk through the alpine tundra of the South Denali area—it’s a hiker’s paradise only accessible by chopper. Then get back on board the helicopter for your scenic flight home.
If you don’t have a car and you want to hike Alaska's most frequently climbed mountain, we will drive you to and from the trailhead. In a nutshell, this service provides a 30-mile (low key) circuit tour of Anchorage and an unguided mountain hike above it for only $23. (Group of 4+ $21.)
May - October
Hiking in the Alaska wilderness—with its sometimes loose definition of trails, and the ever-present possibility of bear encounters—can intimidate a lot of travelers. This hiking tour operator, based in Anchorage, loves to take both first-time hikers and veteran explorers into the best scenery of Chugach State Park—a colorful cross-section of Alaska’s wilds, right outside the city.
Mid-May to Mid-September
There’s climbing a mountain – and then there’s climbing an ICE mountain. Regardless of your climbing ability or experience, you'll end the day feeling fulfilled and inspired. MICA also offers short, guided hikes and longer treks if you prefer a more leisurely explore of the glacier and its grandeur.
Experience the thrill of walking or climbing on a glacier. The Matanuska is Alaska’s largest road-accessible glacier, and it’s just 90 minutes from Anchorage, so it’s an easy way to get up close and personal with these amazing natural wonders. You don’t need to be experienced in either activity—just be in good shape and up for adventure. You’ll either walk around on the glacier with crampons or learn how to use an ice axe and safely work your way up the gorgeous river of ice.
May - September
This guided walk near Mendenhall Glacier offers a compelling mix of tour, technique, and personal attention, so that you can create great memories and beautiful pictures. You’ll get some expert tips on photography—even if, like many travelers these days, you are taking shots with your phone, not an actual camera. You’ll get advice on how to use your smartphone camera better—namely through certain apps and built-in features that you might not be making the most of.
May - September
A “hike” is often just about exercise, and a “tour” often just about history. This 6 mile hike from a Juneau-based operator offers a mix of talking, learning, and sharing, all the while climbing about 1,000 feet in elevation. The rewards for your hiking efforts are multiple panoramic views of Mendenhall, leading to the pinnacle view at the very end with a huge view of the glacier, surrounding mountains, and the ice field.
Don’t miss this unique opportunity to take a helicopter ride out to unforgettable hiking. From Juneau, your destination is the famous Mendenhall Glacier. For 15 minutes, you’ll fly over rainforest and a stunning glacial landscape. Then set down and spend the next 25 minutes walking around on the gorgeous blue ice of the famous Mendenhall Glacier. And from Skagway, you’ll fly over a stunning landscape to your destination—a remote canyon, where you’ll enjoy spectacular hiking through mountain valleys while surrounded by mountains and hanging glaciers
Northstar Trekking operates out of Juneau and caters to all styles of exploration. The curious glacier observer can simply fly to the glacier and snap photographs from flat or rolling terrain. You can also choose to hike on the glacier itself. If you’re very adventurous, you can even learn how to climb on the ice walls. No matter which option you choose, NorthStar Trekking will guide you all the way, making sure you get the most out of this unique opportunity.
If you’ve never walked on a glacier, this is your chance. Going with experienced guides, you’ll leave from Kennicott, hike two miles, and spend the next several hours on the Root Glacier, safely exploring the blue ice, blue pool, canyons, and moulins of this extraordinary natural phenomenon. Choose a half- or full-day tour and learn all about natural and human history from your expert guides along the way. Or ramp up the excitement by going ice climbing on the glacier—it’s something anyone can do.
Experience the thrill of trying out a new sport: packrafting. Led by expert guides, you’ll leave from the town of Kennicott out to the Alaskan backcountry, then strap a raft to your back (it’s under 9 pounds) and set off on an interpretive walk down to a lake. Then unpack the raft and put in the water. You’ll learn how to use and maneuver these unique boats in Class I-II water, and even have the possibility of taking on some Class III rapids. Don’t miss this chance at a very unique opportunity.
Explore the Alaskan wilderness while carrying your pack and camping out—it’s a way to truly get in touch with nature. Choose a 1-night or 2-night trek leaving from the town of Kennicott—your expedition will be led by expert guides, who will take you on hikes that can wind past gorgeous lakes and stunning waterfalls. Work with your guide to personalize your adventure—they know the must-see highlights of this area and can fill you in on the human and natural history along the way.