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looking ofr specific suggestions for 10 days in alaska

arizona
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looking ofr specific suggestions for 10 days in alaska

i am new to the message boards but i have been told its the best way to get info -so here goes,

i am traveling alone in mid June for 10 days. i am flexible with time and events. i am an amateur photographer but passionate about it! i want to take animal shots, see eagles and even flowers. i am not interested in guided tours or history too much. i have a travel agency helping but they have me driving way too much! i am into staying in different places but seeing the wildlife and even the cultural differences is what i want to capture.

i definitely want off the beaten path and some mainstream too i guess. the less i spend the longer i can stay but i am one who thinks 'no room service' is camping! i can rough it for a few days but a warm shower and good food are a must! i hike to a reasonable degree but freezing is not an option!

i can use all the help there is out there! fire away!

thanks!

Manitoba, Canada
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1. Re: looking ofr specific suggestions for 10 days in alaska

Hi clf45, welcome to the forum!

You said you have a travel agency working on this. It might help to let us know what they have come up with, and what parts you like/don't like.

As for driving, Alaska is huge and to get to different places, you have to travel. I assume one of the places you'd like to visit is Denali, which is 5 to 6 hour drive from Anchorage. Rather than drive yourself, you could take a train or bus (or one each way).

I definitely suggest you rent your own car at some point and drive from Anchorage to Seward, which is about 2.5 hours. Incredibly scenic drive. Here are some ideas for stops: http://alaska.org/driving/seward-drive.htm

How interested are you in glaciers? Lots to choose from, from watching them calve into water, walking up to them, and a couple you can even walk on.

Are you interested in bear-viewing? If so, there are flights out of Homer that are expensive but you get to watch wild bears up close.

I'm sure you'll get lots of ideas from others!

Ward, AR
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2. Re: looking ofr specific suggestions for 10 days in alaska

if you have a digital camera, definitely take your long lens for shuttle bus into Denali. and Denali is great for wildlife. grizzly bears, foxes, caribou, moose and more. you'll get some great scenery pictures from a flight seeing out of Talkeetna. beautiful mountains and glacier landings. there are flowers everywhere in Alaska. very beautiful. there are large gardens in Anchorage and Fairbanks. there are eagles in Homer and the bear viewing adventure is great. emeraldairservice.com takes out ten people per flight. Alaska native heritage center for cultural information. there is a flight out of Fairbanks to Barrow that would probably be of cultural interest. the glacier ice trek at Matanuska glacier is really nice. (micaguides.com) the drive to Independence mine on Hatcher's pass is very beautiful.

haines, alaska
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for Haines
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3. Re: looking ofr specific suggestions for 10 days in alaska

Good morning clf45

My neighbor is a professional photographer who has published several books as well as producing post cards and prints.......the last two years she has spent an entire month camping out it one location (one year Denali Natl Park and one year the Gates of the Artic)......she camps out alone and takes day hikes each day to get familiar with the animals and comes back with some incredible pictures........Since you only have 10 days you may want to consider staying at a forest service cabin for a few days......they rent from $25-$35 per night.........most of them are "off the beaten path"........

......provide a good roof over your head, wood (or gas) stove......

.....primitive, but a step up from camping......most locations you would be truly out on your own to explore and take photographs.....you can get more information and make your own reservations at this website.....

www.recreation.gov/campgroundSearchResult.do…

There are also public use cabins available at many of the State parks........you can drive up to or take a short hike to several in the Nancy Lakes and Denali State Park........

After "roughing it" for a few days return to a nice hotel or B&B to fully appreciate running water and room service !!

arizona
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4. Re: looking ofr specific suggestions for 10 days in alaska

thanks sooo much for the suggestions! i will definitely look into the cabins. i cant imagine being able to spend a couple years taking photos for a living-how awesome!

thanks for the inspiration too!

arizona
12 posts
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5. Re: looking ofr specific suggestions for 10 days in alaska

thanks so much to all the help! keep it coming!!

arizona
12 posts
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6. Re: looking ofr specific suggestions for 10 days in alaska

okay, so far i am

going to fly into anchorage and rent a car.

stay 2 nights at Hawthorne Suites (any better ideas?)

Flightseeing tour with emerald air

drive to seward windsong lodge 2 nights do kenai fjords cruise and exit glacier tour

stay 3 nights at sadie cove wilderness lodge kachemak bay

and now i am stuck???how do i get to denali lakeside lodge? it comes up an 11 hour drive! help!

any suggestions how to get that distance covered?

Chicago, Illinois
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7. Re: looking ofr specific suggestions for 10 days in alaska

If you are going South first, I would recommend going to Homer first. Maybe stay 1 or 2 nights in Homer to do the Emerald Air tour, then head to Sadie Cove(? minumum night stay?) Then off to Seward (few nights) for wilderness boat trip and Exit Glacier. This way you will have less of a drive to Denali. Maybe stop in Talkeetna for McKinley flight seeing, stay the night then head to Healy's Lakeside Lodge. I thought the Copper Whale Inn B and B in Anchorage looked nice. Isn't the planning part fun?

Manitoba, Canada
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8. Re: looking ofr specific suggestions for 10 days in alaska

Before you make any final decisions, I suggest checking with Emerald Air whether going late in June would give you better viewing than mid-June. Seems to me I saw someone mention that, but I can’t recall for sure. Regardless, since those flights sometimes get cancelled due to bad weather, book the tour for the first full day you will be in Homer, so you will have a chance to try again over the next couple of days if you need to.

Seward to Healy is about 8 hours, not 11. If you’re planning on flightseeing Denali Park, I agree with tqluvtotrvl to drive only as far as Talkeetna, which would make it 5.5 hour drive that day. Do the flightseeing out of Talkeetna either late afternoon/early evening, or if the weather cancels the trip, try again the next morning.

You might want to consider staying at least one night deep in Denali park at one of the Kantishna lodgings. Some of them have 2 or 3 night minimums, though. Here is more info: http://alaska.org/denali/kantishna.htm

Are you interested in stopping somewhere like the tiny town of Hope? It is certainly “off the beaten path”, lol, yet it’s only 18 miles off the main highway. You can do it as a side trip of a few hours, or stay overnight. These sites might help you decide if you want to include it:

http://www.advenalaska.com/hope/default.htm

alaskaoutdoorjournal.com/Travelog/…hope.html

As a photographer, you also might find this site helplful: http://www.wildnatureimages.com/FAQ%202.htm

arizona
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9. Re: looking ofr specific suggestions for 10 days in alaska

thanks so much-i will re-work things and post again-keep the info coming! i am definitely going to look into 'hope' since i love those kinds of excursions. thanks again! if you two,or anyone else, come up with more let me know!

arizona
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10. Re: looking ofr specific suggestions for 10 days in alaska

whew! all this time i have been planning my trip! it is a lot of work!

okay;

Day1 Anchorage @ Anchorage Grand Hotel for two nights

Day3 Home @ Ocean House Inn or two nights

Emerald Air on day 4 (Chris is awesome!)

Day 5 Sadie's Cove Wilderness Lodge for 3 nights

Day 8 Seward for two nights @ Marina Motel(i am prepared for a Motel 6!)

Kenai Fjords trip day 9

Day 10 Hatcher Pass @ Hatcher Pass Lodge

day 11 Denali @ Kantishna for 2 nights

then i am stuck! i need to get back to anchorage but dont want to kill myself driving, so i need to stay outside the park somewhere for a night and nothing extravagant! i havent booked my flight yet so i am still able to either extend one night at Kantishna(but its so expensive) or find something outside th park. any ideas?

Thanks to everyone so far! everything has helped!