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Talkeetna Alaska

 
Talkeetna Alaska

Page Type: Logistical Center

Lat/Lon: 62.33297°N / 150.08264°W

Object Title: Talkeetna Alaska

 

Page By: jmc

Created/Edited: Aug 21, 2009 / Oct 31, 2009

Object ID: 543539

Hits: 4568 

Page Score: 77.48%  - 8 Votes 

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Overview

Talkeetna is eclectic even by Alaska standards. It seems to be equal parts tourist trap, Alaska bush town and mountaineering jump off point. On a summer day Main Street is literally jammed with tourists. Mixed in with the tourists you will also see some folks walking around in latest Mountain Hardware gear and you will see quads coming in from the roadless bush with dad, mom, junior and a mountain of dirty cloths, heading for the laundry.

If you are climbing Mt. McKinley or camping on Ruth Glacier or heading into any other mountaineering destinations in or around Denali, this is the most likely and most popular departure point.

Talkeetna has a tiny population of 772 but by car is a few hours from Anchorage, the largest city in Alaska.

Walk the entire two blocks to the end of main street and you come to River Park another 100 yards and you are at the river, if its clear, you will see why mountaineers are drawn to Talkeetna, it's proximity to Denali National Park and Mt. McKinley.


Downtown The view of Denali from the end of Main St

Getting There

By Road 2.5 hours from Anchorage.
Take the Glenn Highway to the Parks Highway to the Talkeetna Spur Road at about mile 99.

Alaska Railroad: 800-544-0552. Denali Star - one northbound and one southbound per day mid-May through mid-September. Northbound leaves Anchorage at 8 am arrives Talkeetna around 11:30 am. Southbound departs Talkeetna 4:30 pm and arrives Anchorage around 8:30 pm. Cab fare in Anchorage between the airport and the depot is about $20. There is no taxi in Talkeetna, so if you'll be needing a ride from the Talkeetna depot to your lodging you'll be walking. Being the small town that it is, I bet if you asked the first few people you met, you and your gear could get a ride to where ever you want to go for the price of telling your story. Train ride is beautiful & relaxing, runs about $80.

Shuttles are available to get you from Anchorage to Talkeetna

Denali Overland (Tom): 800-651-5221, based in Talkeetna, not on a fixed schedule, priced by number of people ($75 per person with 4 person min, or charter rate)

The Shuttle Man (Steve): 907-677-8537, custom runs, priced by number of people

The Purple Shuttle (Gary): 907-644-8098 or 907-240-7980, custom runs, priced by number of people ($85 per person for 2 or more passengers), maybe 877-477-6250

Alaska-Yukon Trails: 800-770-7275, based in Fairbanks, partial schedule in winter (rates in summer are very reasonable), travels to downtown Talkeetna only with advance notice and paid reservation.

Alaska Bus Guy (Ron): 907-677-9612, runs on waste veggie oil, schedule is posted on his website (leaves Anchorage early in the a.m.), travels to downtown Talkeetna only with advance notice.

Park Connection: 800-208-0200, Mid-May to mid-Sept., Talkeetna Alaskan Lodge is their "depot" in Talkeetna, which is about a mile out of town. $65, nice, comfortable. Has been a popular choice.

Climbing Gear

Talkeetna
Alaska Mountaineering School has a mounataineering gear store

Anchorage
Alaska Mountaineering and Hiking (907) 272-1811

REI (907)272-4565

Fly in to a glacier base camp (or at least take a flightseeing ride)

From Talkeetna you could do as the pioneers did and walk into the mountains but the reality is that everyone flies in their load of gear to a glacier to set up base camp

Hudson Air 907-733-2321,
K2 Aviation 907-733-2291,
Talkeetna Aero Services 800-660-2688
Talkeetna Air Taxi 800-533-2219,


Talkeetna Air Taxi Fair weather flying K2 Aviation


Setting up camp next to Broken Tooth
Unloading gear at Broken Tooth camp

Guides

Alaska Mountaineering School 907-733-1016. I went out for a week with these guys. I had a great experience. They are a first class outfit that delivers what they promise.
PO Box 566, 3rd Street
Talkeetna, AK 99676

American Alpine Institute

 
camp with Mooses tooth in the background
Camp in the shadow of Broken Tooth. The ridge line on the left is Broken Tooth, just right of the ridge is Bear's Tooth peaking out and then just right of center is Mooses Tooth

Provisions

There's not much in the way of grocery stores or super markets. So buy the what you need in Anchorage. Nagley's store is on Main Street, you can get ice cream, canned goods and beer.

 
Nagley s store
 

Places to stay

Lots of choices here, I stayed at Pat's "House of Seven Trees", right on Main street. 25 bucks for a bunk and a clean hot shower, towels provided, and by throwing in an extra buck I got 4 farm fresh eggs and cooked myself a nice breakfast in the large hostel style kitchen. Rooms also available.

House of Seven Trees
101 Main St
Phone: (907)733-7733

The Road House
Main St
(907) 733-1351

This website maintains a list of places to stay, in and around Talkeetna.

 
The Road House
The Road House, see the comment from Liba who stayed here


Camping

There is a campground right at the end of Main Street, about 10 sites for 10 bucks a night. I will try to get some contact info for this.

Red Tape

Heading into Denali National Park? Check into the Talkeetna Ranger Station on
B Street, don't worry about the address you wont need it. 907-733-2231

links and resources

Denali National Park Talkeetna office
Alaska Department of Natural Resources list of parks near Talkeetna

Talkeetna Chamber of Commerce
Alaska.org Talkeetna page
Wikipedia's Talkeetna entry
Milepost lodging resource

Images

Denali seen from the end of Main StreetTalkeetna airportFlying inSetting up camp next to Broken ToothNagley\'s storesignageThe Road House
K2 AviationTalkeetna Air TaxiTalkeetna map