Alaska: Wrangell-St. Elias Range

Alaska: Wrangell-St. Elias Range information and booking

from
$3920
  • Duration
    12 days
    Days
  • Group size
    3-8
    Persons
  • Difficulty
    Challenging
Check prices & availability

Schedule Details

Summary
  • 12 day trip
  • 10 day hike
  • 1 night hotel
  • 10 nights camping
Equipment Required
Specialist gear required include walking boots and backpack (a comprehensive gear list is provided in the pre-departure information provided on booking).

Highlights

  • Spectacular bush flight over the northern portion of the Wrangell-St Elias National Park
  • Explore the dramatic and untouched wilderness of the world's largest internationally protected area, dubbed the "mountain kingdom of North America"
  • Hike in America’s largest national park directly beneath the vertical and heavily glaciated north face of Mt Jarvis
  • Alpine tundra, immense glaciers, towering peaks and high mountain passes
  • Opportunities to view wildlife such as bears, wolves, dall sheep, caribou and moose

Tour description provided by World Expeditions

With over 13 million acres of pure untouched wilderness, the Wrangell-St Elias National Park is the largest park in America. On this 50 mile hike we cross open tundra, glaciers and high mountain passes enroute to Mt Jarvis where we gain close up views of the impressive north face. Heading north from here we hike to Tanada Peak with wildlife viewing opportunities along the way. Combine all of this with some of the most reliable weather in Alaska, and you have the makings of a true backpacking adventure of a lifetime.

What's included

  • 11 breakfasts, 12 lunches & 11 dinners
  • All group gear (tents, stoves, fuel, cooking & eating utensils, etc.) and safety equipment
  • Trekking poles
  • Roundtrip van transportation from anchorage to nabesna
  • Roundtrip scenic bush flights from nabesna to the heart of the wrangell-st. elias wilderness
  • Professional guide service at a maximum 4:1 client to guide ratio
  • Storage for your extra travel items while in the field

Itinerary

Day 1 Join Anchorage
Today we’ll meet in Anchorage at 8am. We’ll load into our 15-passenger van and begin the six and a half hour drive to Nabesna, the gateway community to the northern section of Wrangell-St. Elias National Park. Our route will take us north from Anchorage, traveling through the majestic Chugach and Talkeetna mountain ranges. After a picnic lunch at the Matanuska Glacier, we’ll continue east on the scenic Glenn Highway toward Wrangell-St. Elias National Park. By late afternoon, we’ll arrive into Nabesna and will check into the Ellis family lodge at Devils Mountain. After settling into our accommodations, we’ll enjoy a fantastic dinner and discuss the days ahead.
Day 2 Flight into Wrangell-St. Elias National Park
After an early breakfast, we’ll load packs and prepare for our early morning Piper Super Cub flight into the park one at a time. As you and your pilot lift off from the gravel runway, the grand scale of this wonderful wilderness will be immediately apparent. The stunning vastness of nearly 13-million acres is overwhelming, and you’ll immediately understand Alaska’s sense of scale as the small plane drifts over the landscape. After half an hour, you will begin the descent toward a tundra ridge above Tumble Creek. After everyone has enjoyed the ride in the cub, our skilled pilot will bid us farewell and disappear into the landscape. We’ll then shoulder our packs and begin hiking toward the headwaters of Tumble Creek, all along trying to digest the majesty of the surrounding peaks that tower well over 13000 feet! We’ll camp tonight along Tumble Creek. Distance: 5 miles, Elevation Gain: 1500'
Day 3 to 5 Hiking south towards Mt Jarvis
For the next three days, we’ll make our way south toward the expansive north face of Mt Jarvis. The size and scope of Mt Jarvis is really beyond description and can best be described as incomprehensible. From the verdant tundra mesas to the twin summits, you’ll have the rare opportunity to witness seven thousand feet of vertical relief and what is literally one of the most majestic vistas in North America. We’ll cross Tumble Creek on the morning of Day 3 and move along a stunning tundra ridge toward Mt Jarvis, and set up camp next to a small lake beneath a hanging glacier. Day 4 will be a long and amazing hike where we’ll cross an unnamed glacier (no ropes or glacier skills necessary) and ascend onto a large mesa beneath Mt Jarvis. Scouting the tundra for caribou and sheep, we’ll stop for lunch overlooking the Jacksina Glacier and the mighty north face of Mt Jarvis. By day 5, we’ll be headed north and onto the second stage of our circuit. Average Daily Distance: 8-10 miles, Average Daily Elevation Gain: 2000'-4000'
Day 6 to 11 Hike north to Tanada Peak
The character of the countryside will change as we begin stage two of our journey and head north toward Tanada Peak. Broad singular vistas will be replaced by tight steep valleys and new views around every corner. We’ll cross glacier creeks, ascend steep and exposed sheep trails, and cross a 7000 feet pass along the way. While the weather and the terrain will dictate the exact location of each night’s camp, we will have plenty of time to truly explore this amazing and diverse landscape. At the end of Day 11, we’ll be camped along a small creek near the airstrip. Average Daily Distance: 8-10 miles, Average Dailey Elevation Gain: 2000'-4000'
Day 12 Bush flight back to Anchorage, trip concludes
After our final breakfast in the wilderness our pilot will begin the process of flying us out of the wilderness one at a time. By 2pm we’ll be headed back to Anchorage where we’ll conclude our journey and bid one another farewell. If you are leaving Alaska on this day, please schedule your onward flights for after 10pm.