Mountaineering in Denali National Park and Preserve
Alaska Mountaineering School. This outfitter leads backpacking trips in wilderness areas near Talkeetna and elsewhere in the state, including the Brooks Range, and glacier treks that can include overnighting on the ice. It also conducts mountaineering courses that run from 6 to 12 days, expeditions to Mt. McKinley (figure on at least three weeks; prices from $6,000) and other peaks in the Alaska Range, and climbs for all levels of expertise. A novice course, which should be enough to get you comfortable in the mountains, will run a bit over $2,000. While you're in Talkeetna, check out its mountain and gear shop on F Street. 13765 3rd St., Talkeetna, AK, 99676. 907/733-1016. www.climbalaska.org.
Mountain Trip. This operator has been guiding climbing expeditions on Mt. McKinley and other Alaska Range peaks since 1973, making it the most senior of the guide companies to operate on the High One. Though the company emphasizes climber safety, most McKinley expeditions reach the summit. Novice to experienced trip levels are offered, and this is the place to call if you're really serious about doing the mountains. Their trips include a Northwest Buttress trip on Denali, which is very rarely attempted, as well as trips around the world. First-class operation, safety first. P.O. Box 658, Ophir, CO, 81426. 866/886-8747 or 970/369-1153. www.mountaintrip.com.
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