What makes the KANTISHNA ROADHOUSE different from the other lodges inside the Park?
Most of the differences are subtle and will gently become apparent as you settle into your stay. But mostly, it is the sense of permanence and history about the place and the people. The Kantishna Roadhouse is owned and operated by Doyon Native Corporation whose shareholders are of Athabascan Indian decent and have ties to the land that date back thousands of years. You will have the opportunity to interact with many Alaska Native staff members at the Kantishna Roadhouse. These lifelong Alaskans are happy to share information about their culture and heritage as well as their personal stories of life in modern-day Alaska. Alaska is a vast state with a total population of less than one million people spread across millions of acres. The road system is very limited and many Alaska Native villages are only accessible by air. Therefore, many visitors come to Alaska and never interact with real Alaskans; but at the Kantishna Roadhouse you will have that unique and rewarding opportunity.
It’s a lot of money, is it worth it?
With no road access to our lodge, we are forced to operate as a fly in only lodge for the 2023 season. This means, EVERYTHING, including our guests have to be transported by aircraft. Unfortunately, a fly in only operation is logistically more challenging and comes with larger expenses. Because it is an all-inclusive package, the total price is indeed a lot of money by anyone’s standards. We have selected the best of everything for your stay in the remote backcountry of Denali. Our philosophy is that hiking, biking, and fishing during the day and returning to a comfortable cabin, a private hot shower and a beautifully prepared meal at the end of the day is WORTH IT! The inclusive guided activities can also make a real difference in your experience of Denali. Our experienced Naturalist Guides are ready to show you everything from the tiniest wildflower to the splendor of the Alaska Range of mountains while guiding and supporting you as you go. Safety combined with discovery, fun and adventure is the foundation upon which we build our hikes and other activities. An experienced Naturalist Guide will keep you safe and introduce you to the wonders of this wild and amazing place. You will have a truly unique and exclusive experience during the 2023 season while the road is closed for repairs.
Is there cell phone coverage and Internet access?
The Kantishna Roadhouse is located 93 miles inside Denali National Park and is surrounded by 6 million acres of true wilderness. There are no telephone lines or towers and thus NO cell phone coverage. Satellite pay phones are the only telephone connections available. If you foresee a need to place a phone call while you are staying with us, you may either bring a pre-paid phone card or purchase one at our front desk to place a call from the coinless pay phone located in a small private booth on property. There is no way to send or receive a fax during your stay. We have a limited satellite internet connection for business use only; the bandwidth is small and the price is high and we are therefore unable to offer it to our guests, even for a charge—it is for critical business functions only. This is your opportunity to truly DISCONNECT from the barrage of daily electronic messaging that has overtaken our culture. For a mere 48 or 72 hours you can turn off your phone and computer and soak up the sights and sounds of nature!
Are gratuities included in the price?
Gratuities, along with retail purchases are not included in the package price. We are unable to put gratuities on a credit card and we are unable to cash personal checks. Gratuity envelopes are available at the front desk for your use at the end of your stay. We ask that you address the envelopes to those individuals that have made your stay memorable or, to a particular staff of individuals such as the experienced Naturalist Guides, Dining Room Staff, or Housekeeping. All envelopes marked for “All Staff” will be divided amongst all staff members.
Is alcohol available for purchase?
Alaskan beer and wine is included in your stay. Select top shelf-liquors are available on site for purchase. We ask that you please do NOT bring your own alcohol. There is a strict luggage limit of 25 lbs. per guest. Additionally, all garbage must be transported out of by aircraft and that space is limited. Thank you for respecting our policy and allowing us to serve you from our saloon while you are with us.
Why is the Park road closed at Mile 43?
Due to a major landslide in the Pretty Rocks section on the Denali Park Road in August of 2021, the road was closed at Mile 43 (approximately half way into the Kantishna Roadhouse) and will remain closed for the 2023 season. Please visit https://www.nps.gov/dena/
What is the flight time?
The flight time in bound is 55 minutes which includes a scenic fly-by of Denali and the Alaska Range, weather permitting. A direct, 35 minute flight will return you to the park entrance.
Why do you require a three night minimum stay?
We are operating on a fixed fly in/out schedule which requires a three night minimum stay.
Which is easier in terms of time, arrival from Anchorage or from Fairbanks?
We recommend that guests start their trip in Fairbanks, Alaska. Fairbanks has many hotel options. The distance from Fairbanks to Denali Air is 128 miles and a comfortable 2.5 hour journey by car or bus. Rental cars are a good choice for travel to and from Denali and there are several car rental companies in Fairbanks to choose from. Denali Air has free parking to accommodate guests arriving to Denali Air via rental car.
Where is Denali Air?
Denali Air operates from their own private airstrip located at Mile 229.5 of the Parks Highway known as “Denali Private”.
Why am I only allowed one checked bag and why am I restricted to 25 lbs.?
Flights are aboard small, 5 passenger aircrafts that are limited to carrying 1,000 pounds. Accordingly, there is a strict luggage limit of 25 pounds per guest.
Why do you need to take my weight at the time of booking and again at check in?
Flights are aboard small, 5-passenger aircrafts that are limited to carrying 1,000 pounds. Recording passenger weights at the time of booking allows us to prepare the flight manifests ahead of time to balance passenger and luggage weights. Due to the limited pounds the aircraft is able to carry, your weight is required to be verified at check in.