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Jim Mar 15th, 2002 07:37 AM

Anchorage as a base for one week trip
I'm planning on flying out to Anchorage second half of June and would like to use that as a base to explore Alaska. I'm hoping to see the glaciers (?3-4 day excursion) by ferrying out from Anchorage (roundtrip) and then renting a car and going up to Denali (another 3-4 days). Would this be do-able with a 7-8 day itinerary? Are there cruises round-trip close to Anchorage to the glaciers (I'm hoping to avoid the luxury cruise type experience and to go for the more adventure oriented type experience)? Thanks all.

John Mar 15th, 2002 08:26 AM

Jim, consider a loop from Anchorage north to Denali Park, then east across the Denali Highway (gravel) to Glenallen, then south to Valdez, then across Prince William Sound on the state ferry either to Whittier (6 or 7 hours, almost daily sailings) or Seward (longer, less frequent) then road back to Anchorage. The ferry ride is very scenic, good chances to see beasts and icebergs or floes (or poopy rainy weather – this is Alaska after all); sometimes the ferry skippers will detour to let folks get a ringside view of the Columbia Glacier calving off big blue chunks. Figure half a day’s drive from Anchorage to Denali Park, another day to Valdez, and a day on the boat plus road back to Anchorage for your driving time. Everything else is up to you. You’ll need to book accommodation for Denali and for the ferry, for which see

Connie Mar 16th, 2002 04:14 PM

This year's Milepost just came out. It is THE book to have for traveling Alaska. You can get it from Amazon as well as some bookstores.

Alan Cleveland Mar 17th, 2002 09:35 AM

Anchorage is an excellent hub or base for your adventures. Rent your car day one. The drive to Seward is only 127 miles along one of America's most scenic highways. In Seward, you can take a day cruise with Kenai Fjords Tours, and also drive down to Exit Glacier. Returning to Anchorage, you can continue on the Glenn Highway for another couple of hours to Sheep Mountain, and the Matnuska Glacier. You can hike out onto the glacier and take some awesome pictures! With three or four days still left, you can drive up the Parks Highway to Talkeetna or Denali.

Jim Mar 19th, 2002 12:23 PM

Thanks all for some great suggestions... I've ordered the Milepost book to start doing some research.... any suggestions for places to stay in Seward and Denali>

xxx Mar 19th, 2002 07:50 PM

Hi Jim,<BR>If you want a real adventure, rent an RV and hit the road, staying in Denali Park and other local state parks along the way. (entry fees are cheap) Beats some of the "hotels" we passed last August. <BR>Took the Kenai Fjords tour out of Seward. The day was overcast and later raining...the only bad weather we had in our 3 week trip (surprising). As a result, we didn't see much wildlife. Would suggest you book when you arrive to see how the weather is holding up. We booked ahead, so we were committed or would loose the price of the tickets.<BR><BR>We were very lucky, but were told to expect rainy weather, maybe cold too, so pack accordingly with layers. Alaska is beautiful. Enjoy!

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