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“The Sound of Silence”

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Caribou Lodge Alaska
Reviewed 4 August 2011

This is the place where we learned how few things we really needed to be happy. It's so peaceful there and Mike & Pam are great hosts who make their home a paradise for those who want to enjoy nature - without ever being disturbed by any unnatural noise.
The cabins are nice and comfortable and kept meticulously clean. Pam's food is really great & wholesome (and plentyful) - just perfect after spending a lot of time outdoors.
There are walking trails from the lodge, e.g. around the lake, and some benches where we sat and simply absorbed the beauty of the landscape. Mike offers hikes for those who want a guide but would never impose if people just want to be on their own.
This was one of our best experiences during a 5-week Alaska trip!

Stayed: July 2011, travelled as a couple
2  Thank Hedgehog_ML
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Mike N, Owner at Caribou Lodge Alaska, responded to this reviewResponded 8 January 2013

Thank you for your comments, they are appreciated. We some times get so used living here in the silence...we can't hear it. However after a trip out to town...on getting home, the peace and quiet is renewed. Thanks for coming!

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Reviews (63)
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Reviewed 1 June 2011

Staying with Mike & Pam was a great experience and certainly one of the most rewarding things we've done in our lives so far. In our four day visit we managed to completely forget about our busy lives and enjoy the beautiful Alaskan wilderness. Mike & Pam are perfect hosts, immediately making you feel like you're old friends, without imposing and respecting your privacy. Although the Caribou Lodge is pretty far from 'civilization', that doesn't mean it's primitive or without comfort. They manage to serve delicious meals, have clean and comfortable cabins and a cozy living room. It's impressive to see what they've built for themselves and how they manage to survive comfortably in the wilderness. Their entertaining stories and the hikes around the Lodge make the trip complete. It's a truly unique place where we'd love to come every year, if it weren't a two day trip with planes and cars from home...

  • Stayed: July 2010, travelled as a couple
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Thank Erwin_NL
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Mike N, Manager at Caribou Lodge Alaska, responded to this reviewResponded 8 January 2013

Wow! Are you sure this is our place? Just kidding! It was our pleasure to have you here and our pleasure to share a bit of our life style with you. It makes it easy with folks who have an understanding of what it takes to live out here, and appreciate it. Thanks!

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Reviewed 13 October 2009

This was our third visit to Caribou Lodge and each time it just gets better! This time we took my son and his fiancé with us. Our visit was once again fantastic. The proprietors, Pam and Mike Nichols, are great hosts with Pam being the chef and cooking fantastic meals and Mike being the guide and story teller. It is a fantastic place just chill out and enjoy the tundra and beauty of Alaska, especially seeing the sun rise over Mt. Denali. Our 4 day visit was fantastic and the weather was, for the most part, beautiful with the Fall colors in full display. My son and his fiancé went on an over night trek with Mike while my wife and I stayed back and did some day trekking by ourselves. The hospitality was overwhelmingly great. It is just a great place to stay and visit and feel at home.

Stayed: September 2009, travelled with family
Thank DIKTHAI
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Mike N, Owner at Caribou Lodge Alaska, responded to this reviewResponded 8 January 2013

Our lodge/home is yours, you are welcome here anytime...but we think you know that. The backpack trek was a pleasure, I enjoyed it as always, fine family. Pam will always have some biscuits and gravy for you! See you next time....

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Reviewed 24 August 2009

Our first time to Alaska and we're most fortunate to have a tour operator that highly recommended Caribou Lodge.
So there we were,two Dutchies from far and away ,but we felt home right from the moment we met our two great hosts Mike and Pam.
It's hard to even describe the experience you find in Caribou Lodge;it must be this great mixture of true hospitality ,the wonderful surroundings,(wildlife abound and around,)great food ,the luxury of being disconnected from the rest of the world and meeting other people..
But the special treat are those breakfasts ,lunches and dinners where Mike and Pam bring you back to what really matters.Good fun ,great stories about Ed the mountain man,(no worries you probably are not going to meet him,)are mixed with some lessons in life.Live simply and don't mix needs and desires.
It is now more than 4 weeks and it's still coming back to us.
When we returmed to Talkeetna (great flight with a floatplane),we knew it .Caribou Lodge was the highlight of our holiday.And back home here in the Netherlands ,we think we understand it ,Caribou Lodge is no need but you desire to go back,once you've been there!
And before I forget great sleddogs,great pictures ,in our staircase,proof of evidence of a great 2.5 days in Talkeetna,thank you Mike and Pam

  • Stayed: July 2009, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank bolhoofd
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Mike N, Owner at Caribou Lodge Alaska, responded to this reviewResponded 8 January 2013

Our thanks to you! Our pleasure to have you here and we hope to see you again someday. It is a bit rare to have folks understand as much about living in the Alaskan Bush and the two of you did. It's a good thing to know...even if you never need it.... Thank you1

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Reviewed 5 November 2008

My family went here this summer and had an amazing time. You get to experience solitude and isolation in nature something hard to find in todays world. The lodge was my favorite spot I have ever visited. Be sure to go on a hike with Mike as you head off without a trail into the Alaskan wilderness. It is truly an amazing experience. We saw abundant wildlife (although no caribou) and great views of Mount McKinley. Also, the food was amazing! I was shocked as all the food has to be flown in and Pam does it all in the kitchen of their house. Not only is the food great but there is plenty of it, keeping you well fed for your long hikes. I agree with the one other post it is not for everyone, but if you want solitude, a chance to experience pristine Alaskan wilderness, and a unique perspective on life the lodge is the place for you.

  • Stayed: June 2008, travelled with family
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2  Thank formenwest
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Mike N, Owner at Caribou Lodge Alaska, responded to this reviewResponded 9 January 2013

Our pleasure to have you! And after 20 + years in the Alaskan Wilderness I think we have things pretty well figured out, but I guess it still amazes us at times as well. You never know what nature is going to throw your way. Hope to see you again someday....

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Reviewed 25 August 2008

This was our second trip to Mike and Pam's Caribou Lodge--we initially went 3 years ago when our kids were ten. We have absolutely loved both of our trips. It's hard to put into words exactly why--there's just something that deeply nourishes our souls in this place with these people. It's a beautiful setting--the hiking, the scenery, the wildlife, the views of Denali, etc. But even more than that, it's the warmth and care of Mike and Pam, their commitment to the land, to sharing their world and values with others, and their good-humored, gentle way with one another and with their guests that makes our time at Caribou Lodge so renewing, so rewarding.

Our stay this time included 3 other couples/families--all of whom became fast friends despite being from different countries, different backgrounds and different regions of the US. Around the dinner table, one of the guests suggested we share our "top ten" list about the Lodge. One of the children said "Caribou Lodge is the best place to spend your time between past and future." That is so true. A place to be in the now. To delight in a game of horseshoes or badminton. To unabashedly reach for another one of Pam's homemade rolls. To trudge through the bush to pick blueberries. To giggle at Mike's stories.

It may not be for everyone--animal sightings are not guaranteed, the outhouses smell like outhouses, and there isn't a TV or way to recharge the Gameboy. But for our family, Caribou Lodge is paradise--
and we can't wait to go back.

  • Stayed: August 2008, travelled with family
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Thank cftyler
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Mike N, Owner at Caribou Lodge Alaska, responded to this reviewResponded 8 January 2013

They say better late than never, again, sorry for being so slow to respond. As you have noted, electronics in the Alaskan Wilderness are slow at best. And our limited knowledge is not a big help. But...thank you for your kind words! We were pretty happy that the "kids" would consider us their favorite spot. Thanks for coming back again!

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Reviewed 30 July 2008

My husband & I loved everything about the Caribou Lodge! When you walk in the lodge it smells like grandmas been cooking all day long! Thanks Pam! When its time for a hike we got to see some of the most untouched land we have ever laid eyes on.
We saw 2 moose, plenty of bear & 1 big blonde grizzley! Not to mention the Eagles, hawks & the very large owls. Thanks Mike!
I personally didnt think this was roughing it at all. We normally sleep in a tent & have to dig a hole! So the Caribou Lodge for me was great! The cabins were well heated....not that we needed it, the bed spreads are very very warm & cozy. The showers room was also heated with a good supply of hot water. We coudln't get enough of the place. My husband & I went fishing on the back side of the lodge at the bever dams. He actually caught some fish on his fly rod! We have yet to meet better people than Mike & Pam. They provided both the entertainment and the hospitality that you wouldn't expect from people who live there lives "in the bush". We would reccomend the Caribou to anyone looking to get away from it all, relax, take in the Alaskan wilderness & beautiful surroundings. We miss it already & our wonderful new freinds Mike & Pam, we hope to see you someday soon....dont forget about the trip we talked about!!!
Sourdoughs at heart--KNK

  • Stayed: July 2008, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank KnKtravels
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Mike N, Owner at Caribou Lodge Alaska, responded to this reviewResponded 8 January 2013

I'm telling Pam you called her Grandma! You folks are not typical in that you yourselves have quite a bit of outdoor experiences of your own, which gives you a pretty good understanding of the life and country before you got here. But, it is not Colorado! We have a few more bears, and bigger too! Thanks for coming!

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Additional Information about Caribou Lodge Alaska

Address: P.O. Box 706, Talkeetna, AK 99676-0706
Phone Number:
Region: United States > Alaska > Talkeetna
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Room Service
Hotel Style:
Ranked #5 of 18 Speciality Lodging in Talkeetna
Price Range: £393 - £555 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 3
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Caribou Lodge Alaska is a remote Fly-in only wilderness lodge. Located on a remote lake in an amazing setting above treeline just S.E. Of Denali National Park. We are closer to Mt McKinley than the Park entrance or headquarters. Caribou Lodge is completely surrounded by Alaska's wild country. The Lodge offers a unique opportunity for guests to not only experience the awesome wilderness of Alaska, but to learn about living in it as well. Life in the Alaska wilderness is quite the adventure and is an experience we enjoy sharing with the world. Small and personal, a "Denali Park without the crowds", Caribou Lodge offers daily guided hiking, extended backpacking trips, kayaking and more, a relaxing learning experience in the Alaskan bush. Come join us! ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Caribou Lodge Alaska Hotel Talkeetna
Caribou Hotel Talkeetna
Caribou Lodge Alaska Talkeetna

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