5 Ways to Explore Alaska’s Great Outdoors
By Luke Douglas
The grandeur of Alaska’s natural beauty will mesmerise nature lovers, adventure seekers, and relaxed travellers looking for authentic experiences. The vastness of this charming land hides the most inspiring sites. From dreamy lakes and meandering rivers to frozen mountain peaks and splendorous parks, picture-perfect natural wonders in Alaska are calling for excitement, adventure and exploration.
If you’re ready to explore Alaska, the USA’s ‘final frontier’, get ready to experience Alaska at its greatest.
Spend a Night in a Mountain House
Just imagine lying in a warm, cosy cabin illuminated by the soft glow of a crackling fire while being surrounded by nothing but snow-covered rocks. Sounds like an otherworldly experience, doesn’t it? Well, it feels and looks surreal, too.
If you plan to explore Alaska, you shouldn’t miss the opportunity to retreat to a remote mountain cabin nestled on a rock outcrop on the Ruth Glacier and overlooking the Ruth Amphitheatre surrounded by towering granite walls. This is a truly off-the-beaten-track experience that will reveal to you the beauty of Alaska’s wintery wilderness. Not only will you be surrounded by some of the most breath-taking glacial scenery to be seen anywhere, but you’ll also be able to test your skiing and climbing skills. Just make sure to stock up with food and wood because you’ll have a true wilderness-inspired experience.
Take a Bird’s Eye View of a Mountain Range
Alaska is rich in pristine and unspoiled natural areas that no person has ever visited. So, if you want to take a look at Alaska’s pure white splendor and its imposing mountain peaks, hop on a plane or a helicopter for the most impressive flight of your lifetime.
A ‘flightseeing’ trip is one of the most unique ways to see the state’s vast stretches of snow, glacial formations, and crevasses while enjoying the modern comforts as you travel. Although Mt McKinley is the top choice for many people, any mountain range, such as Wrangell-St Elias National Park, will be a truly inspiring experience.
Explore Alaska by Boat
Alaska is a land of numerous glacial lakes, stunning bays, and meandering rivers that offer numerous stunning cruising opportunities. Nonetheless, opting for an inspiring small ship cruise in Alaska will enable you to explore areas that are out of reach to large cruise liners.
Such an intimate experience is much more exhilarating, providing you with an opportunity to see some of Alaska’s wonders, such as Glacier Bay National Park, Tracy Arm Fjord, Icy Strait, Juneau and many others, from a much closer perspective. You may even come face-to-face with the country’s wildlife, which will make your cruise even more exciting.
Dog Sledding Under the Northern Lights
The breath-taking Aurora Borealis is a must-see wonder while in Alaska. But you should go with a slightly more authentic experience and try dog sledding under this mesmerising phenomenon.
And the best place to experience this is 60 miles north of the Arctic Circle in the Brooks Range where your own dog sledding team awaits you. However, even the plane ride itself will be a truly inspiring adventure, ending with a ski landing. You can drive the dogs through enchanting forest, tundra, rivers and ponds, try cross-country skiing and snowshoeing, or simply unwind in a beautiful, cosy lodge nestled on the edge of a lake. The entire experience becomes even more magical when you add the flickering Northern Lights spreading across the sky.
Go on a Road Trip
The vastness of Alaska will provide you with different exploration options and the well-known feeling known as the “Alaska Factor” – the impression that this country goes on forever. Yet, only when you embark on an exciting road trip will you truly understand this feeling.
You’ll be driving for hours along Alaska’s highways only to realise that you’ve covered just a tiny portion of the country. And you won’t mind it either! You’ll simply immerse yourself in the beauty of the scenic landscape that stretches as far as the eye can see. You’ll be able to make unexpected stops, be spontaneous, and discover some of Alaska’s hidden gems. In addition, some unusual experiences will come your way. For example, in Fairbanks, you’ll have an opportunity to see giant vegetables on the Tanana Valley Farmers Market.
Alaska is a vast and diverse country that words cannot even begin to describe. All that you can do is head to the not-so-distant north and see for yourself.
Contributor Luke Douglas is Editor in Chief at ripped.me.