Hikes in Denali National Park

With our lodge located at the end of Denali Park Road, we have access to a myriad of wonderful hikes for our guests. Made up of over 6 million acres of wilderness, Denali National Park offers visitors the opportunity to experience a variety of environments within one National Park. From the low-elevation boreal forests, to the high alpine tundra and snow-capped mountains, hiking possibilities are seemingly endless. But before you set foot (or hiking boot) into the wilderness of Alaska, it’s important to find a hike that matches your skill level.

Below is the list of our regular guided hikes. All of these hikes start either from our lodge or from a trail head located a short van-ride from the Roadhouse. All hikes will include a guide who will share information about natural features and historical significance of the surroundings.

We rotate these hikes on a daily basis. On any given day we generally have three hikes available, one hike at each skill level. If you have a specific desired hike, please inquire for availability. You can sign up for a hike the night before at the front desk of the main lodge.

Note: Denali National Park issues permits for these hikes. In an effort to limit excessive wear and tear on the natural surroundings, the park does limit our number of hiking permits per day. On rare occasion, a hike may fill up completely. If you are unable to sign up for your desired hike, ask a guide for a recommended alternative.

Beginner Hikes

The simplest hike you can find in Denali National Park is one of our beginner hikes or ‘casual’ hikes. At the beginner level, most hikes take about 1-2 hours and they’re well suited for any skill and ability level. We go at a slow-moderate pace and stop frequently while the guides answer questions and explain the history and geology of the surroundings. Beginner hikes have no drastic inclines are simple to navigate for all age groups.

1. Blueberry Hill
: 2 miles
Elevation change: 300 ft.
National Park maintained trail. Steady incline to summit with views of Wonder Lake and the Alaska Range.

2. Moose Creek
: 3 miles
Elevation change: 100 ft.
Old mining road through a glacially carved valley. Views of Moose Creek. Can be wet and muddy, rubber boots recommended after rain.

3. Tundra Trek
: 1 mile
Elevation change: <100 ft.
Trail-less exploration of tundra. Choose your own adventure as you learn about the tiny tundra life.

4. Fannie’s Tundra
: 1 mile
Elevation change: <100 ft.
Tour the Quigley estate, including cabin and grounds. Rubber boots recommended for spongy tundra.

Moderate Hikes

Ranging from 4-6 hours in length, our moderate hikes are ideal for the hiker seeking rugged terrain and a moderate challenge. During a moderate hike with us, you can expect uneven terrain, inclines and/or spongy and wet conditions. Moderate hikes include a brief stop for lunch and stops for animal sightings. Our moderate hikes are recommended for those with former moderate to strenuous hiking experience and the ability to navigate uneven or rocky ground.

5. McKinley Bar
: 5 miles
Elevation change: 100 ft.
National Park maintained trail down to the McKinley River, closest view of Denali on foot. Diverse ecosystems: taiga, wetlands, and boreal forest. South side of Wonder Lake.

6. Willow Ridge
: 3 miles
Elevation change: 800 ft.
Primitive trail with rocky sections as well as wet and spongy tundra. Wildlife sightings possible. Rubber boots recommended after rain.

7. Quigley Ridge
: 4 miles
Elevation change: 1200 ft.
Strenuous-moderate. Steep, rocky hike up heavily scarred mining hill. Follow the ridge to Marmot Castle and loop around back to old mining road.

Strenuous Hikes

For the experienced hiker, our strenuous hikes are the perfect match! Strenuous hiking trails will include uneven terrain (rocks), water passage, steps and/or an incline. Inclines and altitude change on a strenuous hikes are long enough to stress the body and elevate the heart rate, therefore it is recommended that you have previous strenuous hike experience. Typically, our strenuous hikes last from 6-8 hours and includes a lunch break.

8. Camp Ridge
: 6-10 miles
Elevation change: 2000 ft.
Out and back primitive trail. Ascent with uneven footing that leads to beautiful views of Wonder Lake, Alaska Range, and a plethora of rock cairns.

9. Busia Mountain
: 5 miles
Elevation change: 1600 ft.
Primitive trail. Can be wet and very buggy. Bushwhacking and river crossing involved (waders supplied). Views of Alaska Range and Kantishna Valley.

10. Friday Ridge
: 8 miles
Elevation change: 2200 ft.
This trail is not flat and eventually dissipates into open tundra. Great views of Alaska Range, Kantishna Hills and the great expanse to the west. Trail loops to old mining road.

Begin Your Adventure Today
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August 24, 2021 National Park Service Announcement
Denali Park Road Closed To All Traffic beyond Mile 42

Due to the unsafe conditions posed by landslide activity the Denali Park Road is closed. The Kantishna Roadhouse is closed for the season. The Kantishna Wilderness Tours bus tour is operating on very limited capacity for tours to Mile 42 through Sept 12.

The Kantishna Roadhouse is an “inholder” business and we must comply with the National Park Service. We are dismayed and saddened that we cannot keep our business open for the remainder of the 2021 season. And, as you can see, we have no choice but to cancel all overnight reservations beginning August 24th and through the end of the season. We will be sending you a cancellation notice and crediting you with a full refund.

Thank you for your understanding. I fully understand that you wanted to be at the Kantishna Roadhouse, rather than reading this and making other plans.

Best Regards,
Marie Monroe, General Manager