Helicopter landing on a hillside in a very remote region of alaska with tall mountains behind
man snowshoeing on top of a glacier in alaska on a sunny day
black bear walking through the tall green grass in alaska
Winterlake lodge in the alaska range with a green lawn in front and a reflection in the still water
group sitting on the rocky beach enjoying refreshments while listening to the guide with rafts and a helicopter also on the with
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North America Alaska Land Tour

Within the Wild

The 7-day Within the Wild luxury Alaska adventure offers guests intimate exposure to Alaska’s backcountry using two incredible lodges: the Winterlake Lodge and Tutka Bay Lodge. Depart Anchorage by floatplane and immediately take in three distinct mountain ranges, including Mount Denali. Exploratory hikes, helicopter- and floatplane-assisted adventures, glacier trekking, summer snow sledding and snowshoeing, fishing and bear viewing are followed by relaxation and comfort in two beautiful lodges. Each day begins and ends with world-class dining, inspired by the landscapes just explored, as well as relaxation classes, yoga, massages, hot tub soaks or time in the wood-fired sauna. 

Winterlake Lodge is nestled in the Alaska Range along Alaska’s historic Iditarod Trail, with views of the expansive valley below and Mount Denali beyond. Sled dogs in training, and trails leading to a lake that is home to nesting swans and loons, are just a few of the lodge’s attractions. World-class salmon and rainbow trout fishing is located nearby. And a wellness program offers complimentary yoga, massages and cooking classes, as well as afternoon wine tasting.

Tutka Bay Lodge, adjacent to Kachemak Bay State Park, offers hikes through an old-growth Sitka spruce forest right from the front door. Sea kayaks and fishing boats launch from the lodge deck into renowned waters known for halibut and salmon. An in-house massage therapist, yoga instructor and personal guide provide guests with plenty to do after a day spent deep sea fishing or bear viewing on the Katmai Peninsula.

Throughout the Within the Wild experience, expert naturalist guides and expedition leaders enhance daily excursions while award-winning chefs deliver unforgettable cuisine, daily wine and cheese tastings and culinary sessions to create an atmosphere of refinement. Whether interested in a coastal seaside escape or a rustic interior excursion, this luxury Alaskan land adventure is perfect for travelers seeking an upscale and intimate Alaska experience surrounded by nature and wildlife. Custom trips are also available.

Read on for details about this trip, or learn more about AdventureSmith’s Alaska land tours or all Alaska trips by land and sea.



Itinerary

Within the Wild: Mountains & Sea Itinerary

This Alaska land-based 7-day adventure begins and ends in Anchorage, Alaska.

Map of Within the Wild luxury Alaska land tour showing the Kenai Peninsula, Anchorage & 2 lodges: Winterlake & Tutka Bay.
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Day 1
Anchorage, Alaska to Winterlake Lodge

This morning at 7:15am, meet your complimentary transfer streetside with bags ready for a quick ride to Lake Hood, the world’s largest floatplane base and your departure point for Winterlake Lodge. At approximately 8:00am, depart by floatplane for a 1-hour flight northwest of Anchorage (added cost), ascending with views of three distinct mountain ranges. Lodge managers greet you dockside and invite you to the main lodge for a brief orientation over coffee, tea and fresh pastries. Settle in and plan your day’s activities with a private guide. Options include: hiking the Iditarod Trail, canoeing or kayaking around Winterlake, an extended hike to Red Lake, scheduling a massage, meeting the sled dog team, joining in stretch and yoga classes, or a cooking class in the kitchen.

Lunch is served in the main lodge at 1:00pm. After lunch, join in a stretch class, dog-lot tour, garden tour, or leisurely walk along the Iditarod Trail. In the late afternoon, consider joining a cooking class in the kitchen with the executive chef, followed by wine tasting and appetizers in the main lodge bar area, and dinner at 7:00pm. After dinner, enjoy an evening education program on Alaska in the wellness room or fly-casting lessons on the lake.

Accommodations

Winterlake Lodge

Meals

lunch, dinner

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Days 2 - 3
Winterlake Heli-Days

Begin each day with optional morning yoga at 7:00am, followed by 8:00am breakfast served in the main lodge. Then join your guide for a helicopter-supported adventure. Lunch and snacks will be provided. Options each day include the following:

Heli-hiking

Board a Robinson R-44 helicopter with your guide to the summit of Wolverine Ridge or the surrounding area mountains in the Tordrillo Range. Spend the day hiking along the ridge or exploring the tundra ecosystem, watching for caribou, brown bear and moose. Other favorite spots include Lupine Falls and Glacier Ridge for views of Tremble Glacier and delightful patches of blueberries and wildflowers.

Fat Tire e-Biking

Take the helicopter to the High Mountain Camp that serves as the base for e-biking adventures. Trails vary in length and views go for days. With your guide, map our an ideal day on two wheels.

Glacier Trekking

Explore the features and ancient beauty of your precious glacial surroundings. During the flight, search for moulins, glacial pools, animals traversing the moraine and dramatic crevasses. Land on the ice to explore a 1000-year-old glacier. No prior glacier experience is needed for this opportunity and you may try sledding or snowshoeing in the summertime!

Happy River Float

Fly from the lodge to meet your river guide on the Happy River. Meander along this rarely visited glacier-fed class III river while looking for bears, eagles, Dall’s sheep and salmon. This is a favorite spot because the deep gorge and surrounding mountains offer outstanding views and serenity.

Fly Fishing

Set out to one of the many secluded rivers–all gear included. Throughout the summer, guides scout the top-secret spots to fish for salmon, rainbow trout and Dolly Varden. Float, walk or wade down a quiet Alaskan river in this pristine region.

Fly the Iditarod Trail

Fly the Iditarod Trail by helicopter to the next checkpoint, for a unique vantage of this historic course.

In the evening, join lodge managers for a wine and cheese tasting, appetizers, local Alaskan brews and gourmet sodas. Dinner is server at 7:00pm, after which you may choose to relax in the hot tub or enjoy the wood-fired sauna.

Accommodations

Winterlake Lodge

Meals

breakfast, lunch, dinner

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Day 4
Winterlake to Tutka Bay Lodge

Enjoy 7:00am optional morning yoga followed by 8:00am breakfast served in the main lodge. After breakfast, take one last walk through the sled dog yard and bid farewell to your fellow travelers and lodge employees. At 9:00am, meet your floatplane at the dock for an 1.5-hour scenic flight south to Tutka Bay Lodge (added cost); enjoy views of Lake Clark National Park and the Kenai Coast along the way.

Check into your room with a view of the Grace Ridge and Tutka fjord. Today, perhaps explore the artist’s community of Halibut Cove. The guide will have suggestions. Nearly all guests at the lodge enjoy hiking in the Kachemak Bay State Park. Kirsten recommends visiting a nearby oyster farm. Appetizers are served at 6:00pm. Dinner at 7:00pm. Don’t forget to book a complimentary massage.

Accommodations

Tutka Bay Lodge

Meals

breakfast, lunch, dinner

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Days 5 - 6
Tutka Bay Lodge Excursions

After an early 6:00am breakfast at the lodge, depart each day for your full-day excursion: either deep sea fishing in Kachemak Bay or bear viewing on the wild coastlines of Katmai National Park.

Deep Sea Fishing

With an early start, this excursion will take you to the deep, pristine waters of Kachemak Bay. Spend the day fishing for salmon and halibut alongside informative local captains with all gear included. Kachemak Bay is home to one of the most productive fisheries in the world due to intense tidal fluctuations. Listen to stories from your guide about this unique region. A specialty lunch will be provided from the lodge chefs for your day on the water. At the end of the day, your captain will clean and fillet your catch at the dock. Ship it home or take it to the lodge for the chefs to prepare.

Bear Viewing

This excursion provides an amazing opportunity to explore one of the most populated wild habitats of Alas­kan brown bears. The day starts with an early rise at Tutka Bay Lodge and a water taxi over to Homer where you meet your pilot and guide. At the hanger, you will be fitted with waders for the day, then take off for a 1-hour scenic flight. The destination flight takes you over glaciers, volcanoes and the rugged coastlines of Katmai National Park and Lake Clark National Park. Land on a remote beach where you may walk alongside bears in their natural habitat and, depending on the time of year, see bears grazing on sedge grass, digging for clams, playing together, courting, resting and/or fishing. Expect to make some stream crossings and do light hiking (2-6 miles) alongside highly knowledgeable and helpful guides. (Please note this is a remote trip and there is no access to facilities.)

When you get back to lodge, enjoy a hot sauna or soak before your complimentary massage. This evening, join the lodge managers for wine, local Alaskan brews and gourmet sodas during appetizer hour. Following dinner, take a walk to Sunset Beach to relax before views of Mt. Illiamna.

Marine Wildlife Cruise

Cruise the Bay for pristine coastal views, including rainforests, geologic formations, waterfalls and wildlife. Watch for shorebirds; sea bird rookeries (puffins, oystercatchers and harlequins); sea otters; bald eagles; porpoise; humpback, minke and orca whales; sea lions and harbor seals. Enjoy a gourmet picnic amid pure sea air.

Accommodations

Tutka Bay Lodge

Meals

breakfast, lunch, dinner

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Day 7
Depart Homer, Alaska

After optional morning yoga at 7:00am, enjoy breakfast at 8:00am in the main lodge. Bid farewell to fellow travelers, favorite lodge employees and resi­dent sea otters. Maybe enjoy one last low tide experience before the adventure ends with a water taxi ride to Homer (added cost). From Homer, consider a 9:00am floatplane ride back to Anchorage (added cost).

Accommodations

n/a

Meals

breakfast

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Details
Inclusions, Terms & Notes

Included

All meals, snacks, coffee, tea and house wines; two days of one Robinson R-44 helicopter-assisted excursion each; two days of out-camp excursions from Tutka Bay Lodge: one bear viewing excursion to Katmai Peninsula and one deep sea fishing day in Kachemak Bay, or a repeat day of either option; one 50-minute massage per guest per lodge; twice-daily yoga classes; daily cooking class; accommodations in private cabin; wireless internet in the Main Lodge; in-room and lodge amenities; daily housekeeping and evening turndown services; all lodge guided activities; use of adventure gear; staff gratuity.

Exclusions

Internal transit, including floatplane travel from Anchorage to Winterlake Lodge ($400 per person in 2022, contact us for charter options and pricing), floatplane travel from Winterlake Lodge to Tutka Bay Lodge ($1,000 per person in 2022), water taxi from Tutka Bay Lodge to Homer ($100 per person in 2022), and optional floatplane travel from Homer to Anchorage (contact us for details); airfare to and from Alaska; fishing licenses; premium wines and alcohol; lodge staff gratuity (at your discretion); insurance of any kind (strongly recommended); Mat-Su Borough tax ($30 per person in 2022); additional excursions (can be supplemented or added for extra cost; please inquire for custom interests).

Payment & Cancellation

In order to confirm this trip, a non-refundable deposit of 50% of the total trip cost is required per person at time of booking. The balance of the trip price is due 90 days prior to your arrival at the lodge. Guests who must cancel their trip for any reason must do so in writing. Standard cancellations are subject to the following per-person penalties, based on number of days prior to departure:
89 to 0 days – 100% of total trip cost or penalty-free reservation change or transfer

Terms & Conditions

This trip is subject to AdventureSmith Explorations Terms and Conditions. Please read this information carefully and call us if you have any questions. A Traveler Information Form, which includes a release of liability, must be completed and signed by all travelers. Your Adventure Specialist will send you a unique link to complete this form along with a packing list and extensive pre-departure and travel insurance information upon booking confirmation.

Vaccination Requirement
To join this trip, all eligible guests must provide proof of being fully vaccinated (at least 14 days after your final COVID-19 vaccine shot). There may also be COVID-19 testing or other requirements to participate; your Adventure Specialist will provide details of current policies upon booking.

Arrival & Departure

The Within the Wild adventure begins and ends in Anchorage, Alaska (ANC). Plan flights to arrive to Anchorage prior to the 8:15am meeting time on day 1 of the itinerary in order to maximize time at Winterlake Lodge; custom pick-up arrangements can be arranged. We highly recommend arriving one day prior to your trip start date in case of any flight delay, cancellation or lost luggage issues. Plan flights to depart Anchorage no earlier than 2:15pm on day 7, following a 10:00am departure from Tutka Bay Lodge (11:15am arrival into Anchorage). This trip may require additional (excluded) overnights in Anchorage. AdventureSmith experts can assist with any additional hotels or transfers.

Internal Flights

Internal flights on this trip are not included in the rate, except for the optional scenic flight from Homer to go bear viewing and a helicopter excursion. Additional internal flight fare is based on your selection for the floatplane flights between Anchorage, Winterlake Lodge and Tutka Bay Lodge. The flight between Anchorage and Winterlake Lodge is booked aboard a small plane. While these are regularly scheduled flights they are almost like a flightseeing excursion and we feel this is part of the Alaska experience. Baggage limits on these flights are 50 pounds per person + one carry on item. For travelers opting to return to Anchorage by seaplane, additional baggage can be stored with the airline at Lake Hood.

Activities

Whether you are looking for light activity options or more challenging outdoor pursuits, the guides can tailor most excursions to suit your skill level. Adventure activities may include hiking, meeting sled dogs, morning yoga and stretching, cooking classes, kayaking, glacier trekking, sledding, snowshoeing, river rafting, fly fishing, wildlife observation, day boat excursions, deep sea fishing and visiting an oyster farm.

Room Configuration

Triple occupancy rates are not available. Please contact us for single pricing. Upgrades may be available, contact us for details.

Families & Children

Children 12 years old and under receive a discounted rate reflected in child price.

Travel Insurance

Protect your travel investment with insurance. Our partners at Travelex Insurance offer a variety of plans and policies to fit every trip and budget. Coverage for a pre-existing medical condition is also available if you purchase the Travel Select plan within 15 days of the initial trip payment; refer to plan details. Learn more about travel insurance or get a free quote.

Itinerary Notes

The above is a sample itinerary. Actual adventure offerings and schedule may vary due to guest interests and weather. Itineraries should be used as a guide only and may be altered due to weather, wildlife, National Park regulation or at the guides’ discretion. The ability to be flexible makes this type of adventure travel unique.

Rates & Dates

Trip Rates & Details

2022 Rates
From $11000USD
Per Person
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Accommodations

Learn About the Wilderness Lodges on Your Itinerary

Lodge
Winterlake Lodge

Situated near the western edge of the Alaska Range, Winterlake Lodge offers seclusion and spectacular scenery. Winterlake Lodge is only accessible by float plane so getting there is half the fun.

Lodge
Tutka Bay Lodge

Tutka Bay Lodge sits at the entrance of a rugged seven-mile fjord at the southern end of Kachemak Bay near Homer, Alaska, on an 11-acre property, accessible only by floatplane. Six private guest cabins, boat house, sauna, hot tub and main lodge are all connected by boardwalk.

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Within the Wild

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