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Denali Backcountry Lodge
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed July 22, 2010

Stayed at the Backcountry Lodge for four nights after one at the Denali Cabins (part of the same operation) at the entrance. to Denali National Park (The Denali Cabins do not have frequent enough shuttle service to take full advantage of everything in the entrance area.) The Backcountry Lodge is rather expensive, but the rate includes three meals a day, an excellent cabin, guides for hikes, lectures, and an excellent staff that is eager to make arrangements that will allow one to see and do as much as possible during the time one has. A recommended extra (also expensive): a "flightseeing" trip by small plane around Denali (Mt. McKinley).

  • Stayed: June 2010, traveled on business
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1  Thank wvhhrh
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed July 16, 2010

First of all, the 95 mile ride to Denali Backcountry Lodge was amazing! We saw all kinds of wildlife and the ever changing landscapes were breathtaking. We were actually lucky enough to see Denali due to the wonderful weather. The accommodations at the end of the road in Kantishna were comfortable, clean and did not feel like you were deep in Denali National Park. There are planned hikes and activities but the guides helped us plan our own unguided hikes and bike rides as well. A few hints: stay at least 3 nights, get out into the wilderness, go on a hike or two, if Denali is visible, go on the flight after dinner...it is amazing.

  • Stayed: July 2010, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank babobear1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 13, 2010

I was not sure what to expect, after reading some of these reviews, and thinking about the cost. The Lodge is just what is says, and everything it says - all but at the end of the only road (and that a dirt road) in Denali National Park. The staff is knowledgeable, enthusiastic, energetic and professional. The grounds are exceptionally well maintained, the rooms clean, quiet and comfortable. The beds will not make your back hurt. There is enough to do to stay busy and plenty of time and space to relax. The food is good. Ample. You can easily dodge the day-trippers. The hikes are great, with good variety. We stayed three nights and were glad we did.

  • Stayed: July 2010, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank Susan B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 28, 2010

Before I left for this trip, I could not find out very much about this lodge. My review is meant to help the future traveler with details on my lodge experience.

Lodge is at the end of the Denali Road. A typical day begins with breakfast. It is served between 7 and 9. Breakfast consists of pasteries, oatmeal, and some type of hot entry (pancakes, waffles).

Several hikes are offered after breakfast. There are casual and moderate hikes. All hikes return before lunch.

Lunch is served from 12 to 2 in the day lodge. Lunch consists of a deli platter, several side salads and soup. A day bus will join you for lunch. That bus arrives around 12 and leaves around 2. These people ride the bus in, eat, do an activity and leave.

There are a few activities in the afternoon. There are gold panning, botany walks and the Fannie Quigley walk.

Dinner is served at 6. It consists of a salad, meat entrée, two side dishes and dessert. After dinner, there is some type of educational activity in the learning center. The incoming guest arrive around 8 pm. They have supper when they arrive.

The rooms are clean and spacious. We had a large room with 2 double beds. There was plenty of room for all 4 of us.

The staff is extremely knowledgable and friendly. Each hike is guided by a naturalist. The bus to Wonder Lake leaves twice a day. It will drop you off and give you 2 hours to walk around. You do have the option of walking back, or riding a bike back as well. If you need something, all you have to do is ask. We missed the bus one day and they drove us out there. They really do go the extra step to make sure your stay is enjoyable.

My kids saw a bear in camp one day and a wolf another day during a hike. They enjoyed their stay as well even if you could not text ..

  • Stayed: June 2010, traveled with family
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4  Thank stl2570
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 28, 2010

The lodge, while not directly in view of MT McKinley is located in a beautiful valley on a river. The views of McKInley are a short van ride or moderate walk away.
The staff and food are truly outstanding.
If you plan to fish and are an experienced fisherman I recommend you bring your own gear as the lodge gear was very basic.

  • Stayed: June 2010, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank aablodgett
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 28, 2010

This lodge was such a disappointment. We chose this lodge hoping to be as far as possible in the park, but without camping. It is advertised as the luxurious lodge at the very end of the park road. First there is nothing luxurious about this place, second national park busses take you further than this lodge is.

For $500 a night they offer only very plain, boring room (though clean) - doesn’t offer anything else but the clean room, soap and toilet paper.

So called ‘family dinner style’ meant 8 adult people squeezed at one table with 8 small pieces of salmon and salad. Lunch was even worse – soup and self-made sandwich in the lunch room packed with hundreds of day –trip tourists! We barely found place to seat.

When we were booking this lodge we were hoping to use their promised transportation to the Wonder Lake and then to hike further. But day trip that they organize to the Wonder Lake gives you only 1 (one) hour to spend on the lake!!! This lodge is the only lodge in the area that didn’t provide to their guests paddles that could be used with canoes that national park provides for free at the lake. Though, they do have bikes for free.

In total, it is a really shame for this price to make such a false advertisement and to provide such a low level accommodation. Camping on the Wonder Lake would be better for us.

The best part of the trip was a bus ride through the park – driver/guide was really great, knowledgeable and entertaining.

I would recommend taking only their daily ride into the park, but not staying in their lodge.

  • Stayed: August 2009, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank Sanya_C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 6, 2010

It was very hard decision trying to book lodges in Denali last year. After many internet searches I came across Denali Backcountry Lodge. I also saw some reviews. The negative reviews kind of made me think twice, but I called them. When i talked with their sales person over the phone, they convinced me I will have good times, and I certainly had the most amazing time of my life. I mostly remember McKinley Bar hike with JD, their guide. He is the best guide! It was just beautiful. I will certainly go back again next time. If I ever go back again, I will stay more than two nights, and go on some beautiful backcountry trail hikes. The only thing I didnt like about the hotel is that they do not have internet, but then, I didnt go all the way to the backcountry to surf the net!!!

  • Stayed: July 2009, traveled solo
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1  Thank Nib2
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 7 Hotels in Denali National Park and Preserve
Price Range: $529 - $858 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 42
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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