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“A Little Piece of Heaven on Earth”

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Afognak Wilderness Lodge
Ranked #3 of 5 Hotels in Kodiak Island
Kennesaw, Georgia
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“A Little Piece of Heaven on Earth”
Reviewed August 8, 2013

I have had the good fortune of being able to visit Alaska many times due to the fact that my brother lives on the Kenai river. Needless to say I have enjoyed many great memories with my family and friends fishing the Kenai. This year two of my friends and I decided spend a couple days on the Kenai then to fly down to Afognak Wilderness Lodge. I had read many of the reviews and it sounded like a great lodge, but what really helped make our final decision was the fact that we could stay for less than a full week. We ended up staying for 3 nights in early July. This might be one of the most beautiful places on earth! We flew in from Homer a day late due to fog. We thought we would end up losing a night but not so. I called Shannon and told her we could not get out of Homer, she checked her schedule and said "Why don't you come down tomorrow and we'll add the day on the end?" I knew right then this was going to be a great group of people to work with. When we landed at the Lodge that next morning the first thing Luke, Shannon's son and our guide, asked us was "How much fish do you want to ship back?" That sums it up, it's not if you will catch fish, it's how much do you want. It turns out that the fishing is only a small fraction of the fun at this Lodge. We told Luke that we had no agenda and really wanted to see anything he would like to show us. We saw everything, bears, whales, porpoise, sea lion, puffins, beautiful water falls within a virgin spruce moss covered forest, of course the local celebrity foxes and fish, boy did we catch fish. Halibut, (My friend caught a 100 pounder his first catch), Ling cod (Huge Ling Cod), Yellow Eye rockfish and Bass. We were between the two salmons runs so we knew that would not be on the menu, though we did manage to catch a few of those as well. As mentioned in other reviews, there is so much to do that you don't spend a lot of time in the cabin but what a pleasant surprise they were. Very clean, built out of Huge Spruce logs with comfortable beds and recliners, hot showers and a view that is hard to describe. The main lodge, where Shannon lives and opens her home to all guests, is where we had breakfast and dinners every day. What a feast! Bryan, the chef, is fantastic. Each morning we had made from scratch biscuits and muffins, fresh fruit, eggs bacon, reindeer sausage, toast, coffee, and juice. Then, as we were getting our sandwiches for the boat lunch Bryan would ask if we would like fish for dinner and would we mind if he prepared it this way or that way. Dinners were spectacular, just as wonderful as breakfast only more interesting, and he was happy to tell you what it was and how he prepared it. From the very first day we had the feeling of being part of the family. Everyone was friendly and seemed happy to be there. This is a first class operation, everything from the 2 new 40' catamaran boats to the fishing gear, the fish processing and freezing facility to the cabins and the food. If you want to truly experience a little piece of Heaven on earth, this is the place to go. We have already started making plans to take our wives next year. Thanks Luke, Josh, Shannon, Garrett, Bryan and Jordan for sharing your home with us, can't wait to see you again.

Room Tip: Bring your favorite beer or wine there are no liquor stores for a hundred miles.
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  • Stayed July 2013, traveled with friends
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Helpful?
3 Thank Mike L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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24 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
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  • Sleep Quality
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Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (7)
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English first
Montebello, New York
Level 2 Contributor
8 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed July 3, 2013

My husband and I have just returned from our two day stay at the Afognak Wilderness Lodge. I planned the stay at the end of our vacation in order to save the best for last. It was that and more…much more than we expected. After our trip down from Mt. McKinley and Denali via planes, trains, buses, taxis with shuffling luggage and excursions, it was a pleasure to not have to think about anything except for what we wanted to do for the day. From the time we stepped off the float plane up to the time we boarded the plane back to Anchorage the Randall’s saw to all of our needs. The lodge cabins and the landscaping create a magical aura. Shannon, Josh and Luke Randall are the owners and operate the lodge. Shannon opens her home to all the guests. It is where we shared breakfast and dinner together, at the table and chairs made from the logs on their property. The food was served Alaskan family style with the catch of the day fish, sausages, homemade sourdough bread, biscuits, muffins, cakes and ice cream. Breakfast was hearty with eggs, oatmeal, fruit and biscuits. Everything was fresh and delicious.
Walking from the lodge to our cabin was like walking through an Enchanted Forest. The grounds were covered with moss, grass, ferns and flowers with a canopy of evergreens to protect us. There are two beautiful foxes who are “permanent residents” of the lodge. They will appear at any time. The female, Foxy, would eat out of my hand. I loved spending any spare time with the two foxes. The location of the lodge and the cabins exude a “Frontier” atmosphere. Nevertheless, they provided us with all the creature comforts we needed and more.
We came to Afognak to photograph the wildlife in Kodiak. Our guide, Garrett, was knowledgeable and experienced. We were able to see much more than we expected. Garrett tailored our daily trips to what we wanted to do and what we wanted to see. The most exciting was a humpback whale breaching right in front of our small fishing boat. A full breach within reach….what an experience, awesome!!!
It was fun to sit around the dinner table at night and share our experiences. The guests who came for fishing caught more than they had hoped for because Luke and Josh knew where to take them on their new catamaran fishing boats. The Afognak Lodge is an ideal spot in Alaska for all aficionados…hunters, photographers, and fisherman or to just escape from the stress of life. It is a comprehensive experience for all ages and interests.

Room Tip: Cabin 1 is located on a front edge of the lodge property with water views on two sides. We sat in t...
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  • Stayed June 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
3 Thank SunnyNY_12
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Wadsworth, Ohio
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed February 27, 2013

My family and I went for five days in August. We were ruined by the experience. Now nothing else compares to the beauty of the wilderness and the wildlife. The accomodations were excellent and the food superb. Luke, one of the guides and the son of the owner was well seasoned and willing to do any activity we had in mind, from fishing to whale watching to snorkeling. We ate in the main lodge with the owner and the guides each day and experienced the true un-edited culture of the Alaskans who live on the Island. Luke took us to view an eagle nest that was on the side of the cliff (apparently a rarity) rather than in a tree and we observed the mother and baby eagle from a close but safe distance. We saw Arctic Foxes, Seals, Sea Lions, Sea Otters, River Otters, Breaching Whales, Orcas, Falcons, Deer, many birds and of course numerous Bear. Luke has an excellent knowledge of the biology of the area and was an excellent resource. We watched a mother bear with three cubs (from a safe distance) eating a salmon. Luke had his assistants (mostly college students working there for the summer) video much of the trip for us. Thanks, Randolf Family for the wonderful time. We hope to return someday.

Room Tip: There is no bad room. Hopefully, like us you won't spend too much time in you room.
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  • Stayed August 2012, traveled with family
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Helpful?
2 Thank amy k
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Huntersville,NC
Level 1 Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed July 30, 2012

We had a great 4 nights here. The cozy cabin was better that I expected. Josh, "Mac" and Garrett were excellent guides and thoughtful in helping in every way. The food and homemade bread was a big hit...thanks for everything!! If you want to view wildlife, this is the place!!

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
2 Thank LucyandKota
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sydney, Australia
Level 4 Contributor
38 reviews
19 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 31 helpful votes
Reviewed June 18, 2012

I was here in July 2011 and was lucky enough to return for another 4 nights in mid May 2012.
Truly, it felt like coming home. Weather was fabulous, new cook, same comfy room. Excellent new boat for amazing wild life viewing...lucky enough to see pods of orca, humpback family with breaching calf and fin whales; plus the usual mammals and birds. Due to record cold winter, the sock eye salmon were just arriving so bears were not in the streams. However, saw a large male looking for clams on the beach. Last year's eagle chick had been replaced with a tiny week? old chick. Last year's silver fox has a boyfriend this year. BBQ on Russian beach with stunning sunset is a high light. Great fishing. Packed 50lbs of sock eye to California. All this in jaw dropping beauty.

Luke is an amazing guide and great fun.

Sadly, you fly over huge tracts of logged wilderness that impact on the elk and deer populations. Tsunami rubbish is arriving on the ocean currents, especially styrofoam.

I am already planning my 3rd trip!

  • Stayed May 2012, traveled with friends
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Helpful?
3 Thank goodtimes1950
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sydney, Australia
Level 4 Contributor
38 reviews
19 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 31 helpful votes
Reviewed July 24, 2011

Totally unprepared for wonderful hospitality. Luke who "does what he can" is knowledgable,
and heaps of fun. Great support "acts" all around but the marine and bear life are the true stars. First time fishing netted me a 65lb halibut. Whoo hoo. I even filleted it. Interesting guests, cosy accommodation, great boat and a brilliant bear called Sissy. Didn't want to leave...can't wait to be back.

Room Tip: block out curtains would be nice for. Lodge 2 was excellent the insomniacs
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  • Stayed July 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
3 Thank goodtimes1950
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Houston, Texas
Level 6 Contributor
171 reviews
22 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 57 helpful votes
Reviewed June 13, 2011

Afognak Lodge is a place I thought only existed in my imagination. It is the land before time where nature has not been touched. Soaring eagles, free swimming otters, wild salmon, massive halibut, spouting humpback whales and huge Kodiak bears rule this island paradise.

  • Stayed July 2010, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
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Helpful?
1 Thank dstillwell
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Afognak Wilderness Lodge

Property: Afognak Wilderness Lodge
Address: PO Box SYB, Seal Bay, Kodiak,, Kodiak Island, AK 99697-0230
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Alaska > Kodiak Island
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 5 Hotels in Kodiak Island
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Number of rooms: 6
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
We are located in the heart of a coastal state park with a wide variety & abundance of land/marine wildlife plus outstanding fresh/saltwater fishing and we've been one of Alaska's favorite true-wilderness lodges since 1974. To reach us, you fly to Anchorage, connect to & overnight in Kodiak then, the next morning, the float-plane service will pick you up from your hotel lobby, have you on our dock by 9:00am . . . and the adventure begins. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Afognak Wilderness Hotel Kodiak Island

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