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Father Son Trip in Late June

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Iowa
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Father Son Trip in Late June

Hi. I've been watching this site for a while and believe I've found the perfect trip planners. My husband and son (58 and 31 and in very good physical shape) are going to Alaska in late June. Here's what they would like to do:

Enjoy train travel, visit Denali and stay a couple of nights; catch some tasty fish, enjoy marine and land wildlife, and take in the incredible scenery. They don't care where they start and we are all so confused by all the options that we thought we'd reach out to you for assistance. They plan to spend about 10 days including traveling in and out but they can be flexible. Thanks for your help!

fti
MN
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1. Re: Father Son Trip in Late June

Welcome to the forum.

I am sure Manitoba will have a great detailed itinerary but here is a rough start:

Day 1 arrive Anchorage.

Day 2 to Seward, with stops perhaps in Girdwood, AK Wildlife Conservation Center, Portage Glacier Visitor Center. Maybe 3pm Kenai Fjords tour (6 hours long)

Day 3 Perhaps Harding Icefield Hike (6-8 hours). Great scenery. Depending on how "late" your late June will be, there will probably be snow at the top.

Day 4 to Soldotna area, afternoon fish? I am personally not real familiar with fishing but I know this area comes recommended.

Day 5 perhaps fish in the am, drive to Talkeetna, overnight. Maybe flightseeing this evening or the next morning

Day 6 to Denali. Activities near the entrance - visitor center exhibits and film, film at the WAC, drive first 15 miles of the park road, maybe hike the Savage Loop Trail.

Day 7 shuttle bus to Wonder Lake or Eielson. Get off the bus to hike a bit

Day 8 another day on the shuttle bus, maybe evening rafting trip

Day 9 to Matsu Valley (Indpendence Mine Historic Site, Palmer, Musk Ox Farm, maybe Matanuska Glacier, Eklutna, Thunderbird Falls, Eagle River. Lots to keep you busy in this area.

Day 10 to Anchorage, maybe sightsee a bit in Anchorage, then fly home that evening.

John

Estero, Florida
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2. Re: Father Son Trip in Late June

fishing is better in Seward. Would recommend doing full day charter with Saltwater Safari there. Do combo trip if possible. Really like Angel's Rest cabins in Seward. Also consider sea kayaking in Seward if theya re up for that. Sunny Cove kayaking has never done us wrong

Leaving Seward, I would go by Cooper Landing for a night and then do a smooth water raft trip there to experience the Kenai river. Drive to Talkeetna and do a jetboat ride with Mahay's. Continue to Denali for bus trip into the park.

If financially feasible, I highly recommend a flightseeing trip to Katmai National Park to view the bears at Brooks Falls.

assuming you arrive late day

1 night anchorage

2 nights Seward

activities

day 2 - AK wildlife center on the way

Kenai Fjords tour

day 3 - Saltwater Safari fishing trip

day 4 - Kayak/hike/or glacier flight (ididaride) then drive to Cooper Landing

1 night Cooper Landing

day 5 - raft trip on Kenai River - drive to Denali

3 nights Denali

day 6 - Mahay's jetboat ride Talkeetna - option is glacier flight if weather is good

pm hike

day 7 bus trip to wonder lake

day 8 drive to anchorage - do stop at Hatcher Pass

visit Native hertiage museum in Anchorage

stay anchorage

day 9 flight to Brooks Falls, Katmai National Park or Redoubt Bay (depending on when you are there)

stay anchorage

day 10 leave

do not shortchange Fairbanks. if you want to make a couple of days, the riverboat tour and the goldmine is neat. Museum at the university is full of good stuff.

totally different route would be to go to Whittier, take the ferry to Valdez, see the sea life and do fishing in Valdez, drive to Denali from there and then back to Anchorage. either trip is a real great experience

Healy, Alaska
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3. Re: Father Son Trip in Late June

Well, I am not good with itineraries, but of course would tell you to stay in Denali for 2-3 days. What kind of lodging are you wanting? We would be happy to help with that as well.

What kind of fishing?? The Kenai is great for salmon fishing - other areas for halibut would be Ninilchik and Homer, as well as Seward and Valdez.

The most scenic section for the Alaska railroad is from Anchorage to Seward, just so you know. It is usually preferred to have a car for the greatest flexibility in traveling around the state, though you can get by fairly easily in Seward without a car.

I am sure MMaple will be on shortly with some basic itineraries for you! :)

Seward,Alaska
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4. Re: Father Son Trip in Late June

The train is a great way to get to Seward.

I'd leave Seward for last so they could bring home the fish themselves and save alot on shipping fees. You'd need atleast overnight to get the fish vacuum packed & flash frozen. I've wrapped it plastic bags and then in luggage with no problems. (Clothes work great for insulation.) Coolers can be bought too esp if they get a big halibut. Otherwise it can be Fedexed$$

I highly recommend www.alaskasaltwaterlodge.com for a combo fishing/wildlife cruise.

fti
MN
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5. Re: Father Son Trip in Late June

Lots of options given. Personally I don't think you have time to include Fairbanks or Valdez unless you are like some of the posters who basically just drive and drive and only see the road :-)

Also, IMHO the gold mine tour in Fairbanks is a tourist trap to the Nth degree. Certainly nothing men are interested in - 1 hour tour, 1 hour held captive at the gift shop with employees shooing you away from walking along the railroad tracks back to your car. Avoid at all costs :-)

John

Iowa
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6. Re: Father Son Trip in Late June

This looks pretty good and thanks for the input. They definitely want to ride the train, so when do you suggest they do that, and which route is best? Thanks.

Manitoba, Canada
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7. Re: Father Son Trip in Late June

"They definitely want to ride the train, so when do you suggest they do that"

Glacierlady already answered that, Anchorage to Seward.

"and which route is best?"

?? Which route for what?

Iowa
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8. Re: Father Son Trip in Late June

From all the great information I've received from all of you, here is an itinerary I've got in the works. Would someone kindly review it and let me know if it makes sense? Thanks so much.

Day One: Arrive in Anchorage. Stay overnight.

Day Two: Sightsee in Anchorage.

Day Three: Take the train from Anchorage to Seward

Days 4 and 5: In Seward -- take full day tour with fishing.

Day 6: Raft trip on Kenai River then rent car and drive to Denali

Days 7, 8, 9: Enjoy Denali

Day 10: Possibly fly in to Katmai

Day 11: Back to Anchorage and then home.

Seward,Alaska
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9. Re: Father Son Trip in Late June

Day 6 Kenai River/Cooper Landing is an hour north of Seward. Are they planning on renting a car from Hertz in Seward?

fti
MN
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10. Re: Father Son Trip in Late June

Yes, I don't like the idea of the car rental and where it will fit in. One-way rentals from Seward to Anchorage with Hertz are megabucks. If you can figure out how to get from Seward to Anchorage on Day 6 (bus, train?), then pick up the car in Anchorage, it could work good. But getting from Seward to Denali in one day is unrealistic in my opinion. Way too many possibilities for problems (accidents, mudslides, slow RV's, etc). I drove from Seward to Talkeetna last summer with only a stop for lunch and grocery shopping and it took us 8+ hours total. And you will want to stop for groceries in Anchorage or Wasilla on your way to Denali.