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“Beautiful Place in the Wilderness” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Denali Backcountry Lodge

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Denali Backcountry Lodge
3.0 of 5 Hotel   |   Mile 95 Denali Park Road, Denali National Park and Preserve, AK 99755   |  
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Hotel amenities
Gurnee, Illinois
Senior Contributor
46 reviews 46 reviews
23 hotel reviews
Reviews in 26 cities Reviews in 26 cities
48 helpful votes 48 helpful votes
“Beautiful Place in the Wilderness”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 5, 2005

Stayed at Denail Backcountry Lodge for a night in July 2005. The cabin was on Moose Creek and loved listening to the creek. The lodge provided bikes, helmets, gold panning gear, mosquito nets (which we needed) and more. The staff was very helpful and accomodating. The meals were above average. The price is expensive, but well worth it if you want to get back into Denali National Park and not tent camp. We booked a package that included lodging outside the park at Denali Cabins, this place was the pits! Heat and hot water did not work, staff was worthless, except for the dining room staff; chef cooked an awesome meal. I don't recommend Denali Cabins.

  • Stayed July 2005
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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165 people have reviewed this hotel

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (38)
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English first
A TripAdvisor Member
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 28, 2005

This place it awesome. If you get a chance, stay here one or two nights. Definitely worth the 6 hour drive into the park. These cabins are among some of the best ones I've stayed at. The room and bathroom were so cute and clean. No tv but you don't need it. Get out and enjoy where you're at. There are about 40 cabins and one main lodge.

They also have park guides around to help you plan your day. Easy, moderate, and hard hikes. They also offer afternoon activities such as an edible plant walk. They change daily. At night, they offer programs from visiting students to help you learn more about the area. You can take a bike ride, walk thru the creek, pan for gold, or just take a walk around the area. They have everything you need (fishing poles, waders, bikes, etc.). There was so much to do here that I was disappointed we only had reservatons for one night.

The meals are served family style and they offer a bar/gift shop on the second floor of the main building. Grab a drink and take a seat on the front porch (covered or non covered areas) and listen to the sound of Moose Creek, 15 feet in front of you. What a spectacular place. If you love getting away and enjoying nature, you'll love this place.

  • Stayed August 2005
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 9
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Berkeley, CA
Senior Contributor
41 reviews 41 reviews
37 hotel reviews
Reviews in 34 cities Reviews in 34 cities
113 helpful votes 113 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 13, 2005

This was the most expensive place we stayed during a 2-week trip to Alaska. At $750/night, I expect to have my socks blown off by the setting, the staff, the accomodations, the meals, everything. They came close, but "no cigar". The little cabins are clean and well-appointed. The bus ride in was 6.5 hours, but it passed very quickly as the driver was a wealth of information about Denali as well as an excellent look-out for wildlife. The setting is outstanding, right by a beautiful stream. A van every evening takes people to Wonder Lake (about 10 minutes down the road) where, if the weather is good, you get a great view of Mt. McKinley. The staff was mixed. About half were friendly, informative, and interested in making sure the guests were taken care of. The other half were friendly enough but clearly just doing a job, marking the hours until they were off. My biggest criticism, however, was the meal service. Think "bad hotel food" and you've got the picture. The desserts were straight off the shelf from Costco. I've been to backcountry lodges where the supplies were brought in by mule and the food was much better.

  • Stayed July 2005
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Boston, MA
Top Contributor
57 reviews 57 reviews
20 hotel reviews
Reviews in 30 cities Reviews in 30 cities
50 helpful votes 50 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 12, 2005

If you have several days and are willing to take walks up to challenging day hikes, then the Denali Backcountry Lodge is the way to see the park. It has pleasant rooms; wonderful, enthusiastic, friendly staff; decent food given the location and the opportunity to see the park in ways that the average visitor can not. Expensive, but their costs are astronomical so they are fair in their pricing.

The best way to go to any of the three lodges in the park is either to fly in or to arrive at the park entrance by noon (rented car, van or bus from Anchorage or Fairbanks, train from Fairbanks. Do not take the train from Anchorage and blow a night at the entrance.) The bus ride into the lodges takes all afternoon but is a major sighseeing opportunity. Sepnd a few days at the lodge (2 or more depending on your time and willingness to hike). Then take the bus out in the morning or fly and you can catch the train back to Anchorage (8 hours but a kick) or get a bus/van that are quicker but not as interesting.

  • Stayed August 2005
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 9
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
A TripAdvisor Member
1 of 5 stars Reviewed August 9, 2005

Do not under any circumstances book this very expensive lodge without travel insurance. I made that mistake and they are merciless. A serious family illness forced us to cancel our Alaskan trip 29 days before it began. Every vendor offered full refunds except this one. I expected to lose my $1500 deposit. But I didn't expect them to bill my credit card another $1500 after I had notified them I couldn't make it. I've never heard of losing more than your deposit?!? Ouch. I have enough to deal with just coping with the family tragedy, but I just get aggravated thinking how this greedy outfit profited from my misforturtune since I'm sure they rebooked these rooms as packed as Alaska is this season.

Stayed July 2005
Was this review helpful? Yes 17
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
A TripAdvisor Member
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 21, 2005

The Denali Backcountry Lodge is a great place. Very relaxing with a stream running through the camp. You can go hiking, mountain biking, etc. I would recommend taking the 8 hour bus ride to the lodge, but flying out using Kantishna Charters. It is definitely the best way to see Mt. McKinley.

One word of advice - AVOID the Denali Cabins. They are also owned by the same company. Do not stay there!!!!

  • Stayed July 2005
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lynchburg, VA
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
54 helpful votes 54 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 21, 2005

The Denali Backcountry Lodge is located as far into the Denali National Park as you can go. It is situated in a bend of the rushing Moose Creek. What a delight to watch the creek from the porch with the mountains in the distance. A few yards down the bend you can pan for gold. They provide everything. At night you can hear the water rushing by. If you want to fish, hike, ride bicycles, whatever, once you are there, it is included. They will also loan you fishing poles, hip waders, and don't forget THAT MOSQUITO HEADNET!! Yes, they have those, too! Every little (very comfortable) log cabin is free standing connected to the others by a wooden walk way. That can be a bit noisy, but it is meant to keep the path clean and dry in wet weather. The individual cabins are not locked. What a nice feeling to have that kind of security. Their motto - it's a long way out and WE drive the bus!!
We bought the Backcountry Safari package which included two nights at the entrance (Denali Cabins) and one night at the Lodge. Everything was included, even a welcoming reception. And when it is time to check out they pack you a lunch to take with you. It is expensive. But when you consider their location and the effort to get everything there, you understand. There is no electricity so all power has to be generated. They really do everything they can to accommodate your wants and wishes. Some of the dinners were a little bland, but no one will go hungry with this package. The bus ride in (92 miles) takes 6-1/2 hours with the passengers being the spotters. Anytime an animal is spotted you shout to the driver to stop. They everyone searches through his binoculars to find it. It is really fun. One time a caribou got right in front of the bus and wouldn't let us pass. We folllowed him at least a mile till he finally left the road. The driver was patient, giving the animal full right of way. We loved our stay and our visit to Denali National Park.

  • Stayed June 2005
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 14
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Additional Information about Denali Backcountry Lodge

Address: Mile 95 Denali Park Road, Denali National Park and Preserve, AK 99755
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Alaska > Denali National Park and Preserve
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free Parking Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 6 hotels in Denali National Park and Preserve
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:3 star — Denali Backcountry Lodge 3*
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
When planning your Alaska vacation don't settle for just another Denali hotel! Journey with us winding through the Alaska Range, deep into the heart of the Denali National Park, with opportunities to see Denali's famed wildlife: Grizzlies, Caribou, Moose, Dall Sheep, Wolves, and Eagles. At the very end of the Denali Park road, past Wonder Lake, you'll find a unique enclave in the park known as Kantishna. This area is home to Denali Backcountry Lodge. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Denali Backcountry Hotel Denali National Park And Preserve
Hotel Denali Backcountry

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