• Launch Full Gallery

Become a true wilderness adventurer in America’s last frontier. Denali National Park will introduce you to the incredible views Alaska has to offer before heading out on the camping trip of a lifetime. Learn survival skills by a wilderness guide as you build shelters, make fire, and learn to live off the land. Take a thrilling whitewater rafting trip down Six Mile Creek where you’ll see diverse wildlife, such as whales, otters, and bears, and hike to views of stunning glaciers.

Program Profile

Country
United States
Community Service Component
None
Get to Know
Nature, Adventure
Lifestyle
Trek and Camp
Travel Component
On the Go!

2017 Departures

Starts Ends Availability
June 13 June 26 Available
June 27 July 10 Very Limited
July 11 July 24 Available
July 25 August 7 Available

  • Day 1

    Welcome to Alaska!

    Get ready for your great Alaskan adventure! It all begins when you arrive at Ted Stevens Anchorage International airport (ANC). You and your group will meet your program leaders, unload your bags, settle in, and have your first group dinner. Tonight your leaders will give you an orientation to the program and then it’s off to bed — you have to rest up before the real adventure begins!

    Overnight: Anchorage, Alaska

  • Day 2

    The journey begins in the spectacular Denali National Park, where you will get to see North America’s tallest peak! Complete the Mount Healy Overlook trail where you will look out upon the sweeping views of the Denali National Park entrance area, the Nenana River Valley, Healy Ridge, and nearby alpine ridges. Get a glimpse of a traditional form of transportation in Alaska when you watch a dog sledding demonstration put on by the park rangers.

    Overnight: Campsite near Denali National Park

  • Day 3

    Begin with an early start to the day as you take a bus tour to explore the inner parts of the park that aren’t open to visitor vehicles. You’ll begin to notice the varying landscapes and variety of animals that call the park home. Keep an eye out for bear, moose, caribou, and other animals along the road as you travel deeper into the park.

  • Day 4 - 5

    After two great days in Denali National Park, we will head east along the Denali highway where we will stop at Maclaren River Lodge to camp and canoe near the base of the Maclaren Glacier! The group will hike one of the many trails around the lodge and learn about the ever changing landscape and how it’s impacting the animals and people that call this area home.

    Overnight: Maclaren River Lodge

  • Day 6

    Pack up the van and drive to Wrangell-St. Elias National Park where you will set up a camp and prepare your gear for 3 days of backcountry camping. At 13.2 million acres, Wrangell-St. Elias is the same size as Yellowstone Nat. Park, Yosemite Nat. Park, and Switzerland combined! Relax after a long day of driving and settle into your campsite where the guides will meet the group and give an orientation to the park and the upcoming activities. After the orientation, get a good night of sleep before 3 days in the backcountry of Alaska!

    Overnight: Wrangell-St. Elias National Park

  • Day 7 - 9

    The next three days will be weather dependent. One day will be spent hiking and exploring an old copper mine operated in the early 1900’s. Another day the group will learn about packrafting (packrafts are small, personal inflatable boats that will fit into your backpacks), and spend the day running rapids and paddling around a glacier lake. Finally, head out to the glacier and learn how to ice climb! The guides will teach you the basic techniques of ice climbing and you’ll get the chance to climb a few walls on the Root Glacier. In the evenings, the group will learn different techniques such as how to set up camp properly, cooking, packing your backpack correctly, etc to ensure a safe and memorable camping trip in the backcountry.

    Overnight: Wrangell-St. Elias National Park

  • Day 10

    Pack up all of your camping gear and head back to the van where we will drive towards the Kenai Peninsula. This will be a long travel day as we make our way towards Seward but the views are well worth the drive. Once we arrive in town, we’ll set up camp and relax before heading to bed.

    Overnight: Seward, Alaska

  • Day 11 - 13

    The next three days are full of different outdoor activities that will challenge you both physically and mentally! Start out by whitewater rafting down the beautiful and challenging rivers of the Kenai Peninsula. The group will then get out on the open water where you will see whales, otters, bears, and other animals that call the Kenai home! Finish the trip with a hike along the dense blue ice of Exit Glacier and see the spectacular views of the Harding Icefield which covers over 300 square miles! Last but not least, visit the SeaLife Center where we will see the rehabilitation efforts of animals up close and personal that are native to this area!

    Overnight: Seward, Alaska

  • Day 14

    This will be your final journey back to Anchorage where you will spend the night before you head home in the morning. Relive the memories and adventures you experienced with your group as you come together for one final time for a closing ceremony.

    Overnight: Anchorage, Alaska

  • Day 15

    Enjoy one last breakfast as a group before saying goodbye to beautiful Alaska as you fly back home to share unforgettable stories with your friends and family.

An Important Note About Schedule Changes

Rustic Pathways reserves the right to change, alter, or amend the daily itinerary for this trip at any time. Changes can be made for various reasons including changes in flight or program schedules, changes in the schedules of various external tours incorporated in our trips, the addition of new activities into a trip, or the substitution of an old activity for a new activity.

The itinerary shown here provides a good outline of the anticipated daily schedule for this program. As with any travel program, some changes may occur.

“Optional Activities” are fully included in the cost of your program, but you can choose to not do these activities.

“Add-On Activities” are not included in the cost of your program and must be paid for separately. Add-on activities are rare, but include things like skydiving, bungee jumping, or weekend side-trips. Not every program has add-on activities.

For more information, email usa@rusticpathways.com

CARRY-ON

A 25-30 Liter is ideal as this will also be the daypack you use during most daily activities.

  • ID or Passport (if applicable)
  • Photocopy of passport
  • Wallet/money
  • Visa documentation (if applicable)
  • Refillable Water bottle – Required
  • Book and/or journal
  • Pen
  • Phone
  • Camera
  • Chargers
  • Change of clothes
  • Hiking boots, water resistant
  • Medication
  • Consent to Travel form
  • Rustic Pathways emergency contacts

CHECK LUGGAGE

A 50-75 liter backpack (with rain cover) is recommended, large enough to fit all your clothes and gear. Suitcases/wheeled bags are not suitable on this program.

Key Points to Remember

  1. You will be carrying your pack throughout the program so bring only what you need and be prepared to wear clothes multiple times throughout the trip!
  2. Non-cotton layers are vital to ensuring your warmth and comfort, as cotton does not insulate or dry quickly if wet — stick to synthetic blends  and avoid cotton blends if possible.

Clothes

  • Mid/Heavyweight Socks (2-4)
  • Lightweight socks (10)
  • Underwear (14)
  • Thermal top and bottom base layer: (1 pair)
  • Hiking pants (2 pair)
  • Shorts (2 pairs)
  • Mid-layer bottoms (1)
  • Waterproof/rain pants
  • Shirts (8-10)
  • Mid-Layer tops (2, fleece)
  • Mid-weight coat
  • Waterproof/rain jacket
  • Sneakers
  • Sandals
  • Sunglasses
  • Hat with brim/visor
  • Warm hat
  • Head net
  • Gloves
  • Quick dry towel
  • Bathing suit

Optional Clothes

  • Scarf
  • Hand/foot warmers
  • Trekking poles
  • Gaiters
  • Bandana

Toiletries

(Travel size bottles in Ziploc bags)

  • Shampoo
  • Conditioner
  • Body wash
  • Face wash
  • Toothbrush
  • Toothpaste
  • Sunscreen, SPF 30+
  • Lip sun protection, SPF 30+
  • Bug spray with DEET
  • Feminine hygiene products
  • Contacts and solution (if applicable)
  • Deodorant
  • Wet Wipes
  • Razor/shaving cream

Miscellaneous

  • Sleeping bag (0-20°F / -18 to -6°C)
  • Headlamp with extra batteries
  1. a
    Anchorage

    Welcome to Alaska! Anchorage is the capital and the starting point for the trip!

  2. b
    Denali National Park

    6 million acres of national park and home to the tallest peak in North America: Denali (formally known as Mt. Mckinley)

  3. c
    MaClaren River Lodge

    A quick stopping point to canoe and explore Alaska along the Denali Highway.

  4. d
    Wrangell St. Elias National Park

    The largest national park in the U.S. Spend your time back country camping, ice climbing and glacier hiking.

  5. e
    Seward

    Located on the Kenai Peninsula, spend your time camping, hiking, and white water rafting on the beautiful and challenging 6 mile creek.