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The Great Alaska Adventure 2013!

Written by Willie Karidis
    Tuesday, 18 December 2012
The Great Alaska Adventure 2013!

“Taking this trip to Alaska was the best thing that I’d ever done for myself.”
- Mia Kuether, participant, 2012 Great Alaska Adventure

“From the famous owl’s nest from the movie Into The Wild, to swimming moose, a lonely grizzly, beaver entering his mansion, magnificent clear view of Denali, outstanding meals, our naturalist Nan’s wisdom, delightful people and so much more in one adventure....it was awesome!”
- Ellen Boettcher and Pat Cochran, participants, 2012 Great Alaska Adventure

This past September my wife Christine and I led 45 Urban Ecology Center members to our former home and showed them a slice of what makes Alaska magical. It was so much fun, we are doing it again!

September 5th - 14, 2013, are the dates slated for this year’s trip. Why September? It’s beautiful! The fall colors are booming, the mosquitoes are long gone and there is a chance to see the northern lights. What’s more, Alaska’s tourism business is seasonally based, essentially from late May to mid September. For the most part, the crowds of summer tourists have subsided, leaving us with more inspiring Alaska wilderness to share with fewer people. For those of us who have lived in Alaska, this is one of our favorite times of the year.

The itinerary of the Great Alaska Adventure is a wonderful coast to interior snapshot, spread out over 9 nights and 10 days. We will assemble in Anchorage for the first night and then in the morning immediately take the train through the pristine wilderness of the Kenai Peninsula. Be prepared for alpine glaciers and spectacular mountains as we reach the southern terminus of the Alaska Railroad and the quaint coastal town of Seward. Here we will spend two nights visiting the Exit Glacier and taking a boat tour of Kenai Fjords National Park, home of whales, sea otters, puffins and tidewater glaciers. From here we will take a motorcoach through the interior of the state to Denali National Park. We will spend 6 nights with the Denali Education Center at their 10 acre campus located on the banks of the Nenana River. Daily hiking opportunities, learning about the wildlife and natural history of Denali and evening programs from local explorers will highlight your experience. The bus trip into Denali National Park will provide an opportunity to search for grizzlies, dall sheep, caribou, moose, wolf and other residents of this subarctic ecosystem. The scenery is breathtaking and the people of the area are welcoming and friendly.

You will have your first opportunity to sign up for the trip on Thursday, January 17th from 7-8:00 pm at the Riverside Park location of the Urban Ecology Center. We will present a slideshow which will show highlights of the trip and answer questions about gear, logistics and itinerary. All sign ups for the Great Alaska Adventure will be on a first come, first served basis. A $200 nonrefundable deposit will be required upon sign up. If necessary, a second orientation will be held on January 31st, same times, also at the Riverside Park location. Program cost, including all lodging, transportation and most meals, for the Great Alaska Adventure is $2325. Program price does not include airline reservations.

We hope you can join us for this spectacular journey into the inspiring wilderness of Alaska.

Photo Credit: Photo by Willie Karidis
Willie Karidis

Willie Karidis

Willie Karidis was born and raised in Milwaukee then took off for Denali National Park, Alaska, spending 25 years enjoying the wilderness of the Big Country. Gold mining in the bush, roofing in the Aleutian Islands and discovering the furthest inland whale in North American history were adventurous days. Working as the Executive Director of the Denali Education Center for 16 years was a time of wonderful exploration. 

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