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“One of a kind” 5 of 5 stars
Review of North Face Lodge

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North Face Lodge
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Post Office Box 67, Denali National Park and Preserve, AK 99755   |  
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Ashland, Illinois
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
16 helpful votes 16 helpful votes
“One of a kind”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 24, 2013

North Face Lodge is truly one of a kind. The staff treats you like family and are superb in making your visit worthwhile. You will have about one staff person for every two or three guests. Most of the staff have at least masters degrees in the natural sciences. As they guide you around Denali, both their experience and their love of the park shows.
Meals are gourmet including the picnic lunches you take on your hiking adventures. Btw, they offer guided hikes for all physical abilities--from a 2000 ft. elevation rise to "forays" for photographers.
We certainly enjoyed our fellow travelers too. Most were like minded as us--there for the adventure and wanting to learn more about the unbelievable scenery we have entered.
I know it was pricey, but it was worth every penny. I truly wish to thank the North Face folks for an experience we will never forget.

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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70 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (13)
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English first
Arkansas
Contributor
18 reviews 18 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
24 helpful votes 24 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed August 18, 2013

We booked a room a the Denali North Face Lodge thinking that for $3400.00 for a basically 2 1/2 day stay we would be getting a nice place to stay out in the wilderness. First, the ride to the lodge is 90 miles, some of which is over a dirt road cut into the mountains called Polycrome Pass with no guard rails, lots of road equipment, hairpin turns looking straight down-very scary. They don't tell you up front but the ride in is considered day 1. The picnic food on the way there was good for being hauled around but the next day my husband a diaria so bad that he had to stay in bed the entire stay. The hotel itself looks like an outdated Motel 8 with notes on the wall not to get toothpaste or contact solution on their towels as they will have to replace them. Well for that kind of money-they should be able to afford a few towels! The room is hot with no AC in the summer. The beds are small unless you're lucky enough to get one with a double. Wish we had only did the bus ride in and back out again. On the bright side the food in the dining room was good but the staff decide whom you will be sitting with each night.

Room Tip: If you are a light sleeper try to get the double bed rooms.
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  • Stayed July 2013, traveled with family
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 10
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Westerville, OH
Top Contributor
80 reviews 80 reviews
44 hotel reviews
Reviews in 48 cities Reviews in 48 cities
73 helpful votes 73 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 11, 2013

There really is nothing that I can add that other reviewers have not already mentioned. North Face Lodge should be on everyone's bucket list.

We were glad that we went for a special emphasis weekend. The only down side to it was that we did not have enough time to do everything that we wanted to do. (Ex. we didn't get to canoe on Wonder Lake.)

It isn't like anyone forced us to stay in for the evening program- in fact, if we had gone canoeing we would have missed an amazing presentation. Life is all about trade offs.

If we were to do it over again, we would have stayed for 4 nights. We definitely could have used one more day. We fell in love with the park and with lodge.

It made me feel sorry for those who only see Denali from a seat in a bus.

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chicago, Illinois
Senior Contributor
35 reviews 35 reviews
13 hotel reviews
Reviews in 28 cities Reviews in 28 cities
22 helpful votes 22 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 4, 2013

We always like staying in the National Parks and were drawn to Camp Denali/North Face Lodge because of the great reviews and we were not disappointed – in fact, it exceeded our expectations.

We ultimately chose the Lodge over Camp Denali because of the in-room bath/showers and were very glad we did. We visited the Camp while we were there and it is very very nice -- just that the long walk to the bathroom and even longer walk to the showers was more than we wanted to deal with. The staff, guides, food, amenities are all the same at the Lodge & Camp. If you plan on going to the Lodge, try to get room 15 – it is the only room for more than 2 people (holds 3-4) and by far has the most space and best view of Mt. McKinley…not to mention it’s the coolest on hot days because of the larger room and many windows.
What makes the Lodge truly unique is the camaraderie between the guests in such a short period of time. Whether it’s the long bus ride together or dinning rotation or hiking together – you really fell like you know the other guests very well almost immediately – quite something and have experienced nothing else like it.

Now…the price – one of our dilemmas was the cost and whether we could justify it. Having stayed there – I actually think it was a very good value. Expensive, but everything is included and if you did separately, not sure it would be that much less. You need to remember, everything is top notch and some of the activities provided are only available by the Lodge/Camp in the Park. For example, the hikes are all led by an expert guide/naturalist and they are the only ones that are allowed to lead hiking in the Park - the NPS doesn’t even conduct guided hikes…they are the only ones that have canoes available on Wonder Lake – what an experience! In addition, the food is 5 star and the guest speakers at night are very interesting.

Denali is beautiful and staying at either the Camp or Lodge will make your experience even that much more memorable.

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 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.
Torrance
Senior Contributor
30 reviews 30 reviews
28 hotel reviews
Reviews in 29 cities Reviews in 29 cities
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 4, 2013

This lodge provides for comfortable access to wilderness hiking and other outdoor activities near the boundary between old and new park areas. The staff at the lodge are friendly, courteous, intelligent and knowledgeable. By locating in a remote area, there are necessary restrictions on alcohol, communications, and trash handling. The rooms are clean, well maintained, functional, and small. The lodge provides all inclusive food, baggage handling, transportation and guided hiking services for its guests.

Outdoor benefits include access to staff naturalists, and use of hiking equipment, rain coats, rain pants, mosquito nets, canoes, fishing gear, and mountain bikes.

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Watkinsville, Georgia
Top Contributor
80 reviews 80 reviews
21 hotel reviews
Reviews in 33 cities Reviews in 33 cities
62 helpful votes 62 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 2, 2013

We had a wonderful 3 day stay here. The bus trip in was very educational as the driver had a microphone and could explain what we were seeing. Stops were made whenever wildlife was spotted. We had a nice picnic lunch on route to the lodge. We were met with dessert and beverages at the lodge and met John, our host. John was the perfect host, always friendly and helpful. He made you feel like you were family. The food was excellent as were the daily hikes. The rooms are on the small side, but the views are fantastic (especially the sunny day with Mt. Mckinley soaring nearby) and the living room is very inviting. There was always fruit available (but alas no cookies except at lunch). They have a great baker.

Room Tip: The room on the far end has the best view and the best outdoor seating.
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  • Stayed July 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Edwardsville, Illinois
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 2, 2013

Staying at North Face Lodge was a unique experience. Located deep in the park past Wonder Lake, there are more animals than people. Looks out at the north face of Mt. McKinley, the limited number of comfortable rooms (15) are spartan. What makes the experience unique is the outstanding service of the staff and guides. They are committed to the pristine wilderness of Denali and to assuring that you have a rich and rewarding stay. The guides are very knowledgeable and adjust their talks and their walking pace to your needs. The stay is also unique because the staff builds a sense of camaraderie among the guests; we eat together family style and share our adventures. Anyone who loves the wilderness but doesn't want to backpack/camp will love their stay at North Face Lodge because it puts you in the wild without the danger, hard work, and difficulty. It is the gold standard for a stay in Denali.

Room Tip: All the rooms are equal
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  • Stayed July 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about North Face Lodge

Address: Post Office Box 67, Denali National Park and Preserve, AK 99755
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Alaska > Denali National Park and Preserve
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Restaurant
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 30 Specialty Lodging in Denali National Park and Preserve
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 15
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Located near the end of the unpaved, mountainous 90-mile road into Denali National Park, North Face Lodge is one of only two in-park lodgings in view of Mt. McKinley. It specializes in learning adventures for active travelers, featuring naturalist-led hikes and field trips for visitors who wish to explore Denali in-depth. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
North Face Hotel Denali National Park And Preserve

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