Amongst the big, bold, unforgiving landscape of the Denali National Park you’ll find the most welcoming, inviting sanctuary – the Kantishna Roadhouse. Imagine wooden cabins, log-fires, spectacular views of Alaska’s rugged scenery and the best night’s sleep you’ve had in a while. After a day of hiking, biking, fishing, kayaking, tellemark skiing or indeed, any of the adrenaline-fuelled activities this North American haunt is known for, crawl back to this peaceful mountainside dwelling for the rest and refuel you body deserves.
About as remote as you can get – you aren’t allowed up this road through the park unless you’re staying at the hotel so you’ll feel like the scenery is yours to enjoy alone. The drive from the entrance of the park takes roughly six hours and is the perfect opportunity to soak in the ethereal views of Mount McKinley with the windows open as you meander through Alaskan wilderness. Spend the afternoon gold panning in nearby Moose Creek once you arrive, and keep your fingers crossed – if you’re successful on the gold hunt you can stay a few more weeks in this stunning country. If not, drown your sorrows in the only full-service saloon in the Denali Park backcountry – Smokey Joe’s Saloon.
Prepare for the ultimate Alaskan lodge experience here – with such a secluded location energy is generated onsite and as such is a precious commodity, so don’t expect air conditioning and hairdryers. Switch off your phone (there’s no wifi anyway) and immerse yourself in the Denali way of life – no daily mail, no facebook, just natural outdoor goodness. The cabins at the Kantishna Roadhouse are warm, cozy and comfortable, have private bathrooms, and are built from beautiful Alaskan white spruce logs.
Why we love it
With a library stocked full of Alaskan literature (and the odd board game) you can spend countless evenings in a rocking chair on the veranda, sipping a mug of tea and listening to the soothing sounds of Moose Creek below you. You might begin to question whether strapping on the hiking boots is the best idea each morning, but one glimpse of the nearby wildlife or the ever-ominous Mt McKinley will leave you itching to get out. One our favourite activities on offer here is the dog team presentation, where you’ll meet a team of Alaskan sled dogs, harness them up and take them for an icy run, guided by the son of local celebrity and Iditarod Dog Mushing Champion, Emmit Peter Sr.