We have an expression in Alaska: the best place to flightsee from is where you are when the weather's good. Alaska weather can change quickly, and visitors unfortunately do get shut out. Check the forecast. If it looks like it's changing for the worse, go now.
|Talkeetna (South Side)||Advantages|
This authentic pioneer town south of Denali is the closest takeoff point to the Denali massif itself.
Denali's south side features towering granite monoliths, steep-spilling glaciers, ruggedness, and rock spires.
|Denali Park (North Side)||Advantages|
The north side of Denali plunges 17,000 feet to the tundra in just two miles (versus 30 miles on the south side).
The north side has fewer spires and cornices, but long glacial slopes with huge ice blocks and cliffs perched to fall off.
|Anchorage (South Side)||Advantages|
If you're headed north to Talkeetna or Denali National Park, and the weather forecast looks good, wait until you get there.
Denali flightseeing from Anchorage is still spectacular, but you spend more time getting there than seeing the mountain.
You'll fly north over a roadless wilderness of braided rivers, vast forests, and thriving wetlands while looking for moose and bear.
After 45 minutes, you'll enter the glacial amphitheaters of Denali for close-up views of crevasses, granite walls, and the mountain itself, which you explore for 30 minutes.