RMC and SHTPS present Alaska June 15 - 23, 2017Alaska… It’s a place with awe-inspiring scenic beauty, wide-open spaces and abundant wildlife. And this walking tour will be one of the best ways to discover what makes the Alaskan wilderness unique: fragrant forests, amazing wildlife, the sounds of nature, sublime mountain light, and a real sense of peace. You’ll experience the fascinating insights about the trees, tundra, wildlife, native and natural history of the places you visit.

You’ll come away with a much deeper understanding of this scenic and exciting State of natural beauty

Note: This tour will be limited to 14 participants

a- hiker2Tour Includes:

  • Round-trip coach transportation to JFK
  • Round-trip jet flights to Anchorage
  • Round-trip transfers between airport and hotel
  • First Class accommodations
  • Airline & hotel taxes
  • Service charges at the hotel
  • Transportation throughout Alaska by private van
  • Escorted throughout
  • Guided walks
  • Daily breakfast
  • Additional meals as indicated
  • Sightseeing tours as per itinerary
  • Sightseeing entrance fees

 

ITINERARY

Day 1: June 15 – Departure for Anchorage – Onward to Girdwood (D)
Depart today via your connecting flights to Anchorage. Upon arrival at the Anchorage Airport.
We will meet our escort and continue for a 1-hour drive to Girdwood for our welcome dinner and overnight.

Day 2: June 16- In Girdwood (B)
30After our morning breakfast, we will proceed on our first walk to the Winner Creek Nature Trail. Passing through North America’s Northern most rainforest, The Winner Creek trail has gentle, graded, maintained sections with boardwalks as well as plenty of rugged, rooty sections of trail.
This 5 mile “out and back” hike takes about 2-3 hours and includes: rain gear (if necessary), a snack, natural interpretation, bear protection and a friendly guide.  Our naturalist guide will point out and discuss the flora and fauna of North America’s northern-most temperate rainforest. You may even see a moose or a bear. Return to our hotel for the rest of the day to relax and have dinner on our own. Overnight in Girdwood.
Today’s walk from 2 to 3 hours

Day 3: June 17 – To Homer (B)
46_bears
flowersBreakfast followed by our transfer to Homer (about a 4-hour drive). After checking into our hotel, we will have a late afternoon nature hike on the Homestead Trail guided by a local resident The Homestead Trail winds from the top of Baycrest Hill, crosses Diamond Ridge Road and follows Crossman Ridge to the Bridge Creek Reservoir. Winding through forests, meadows and over streams, this marked and maintained trail serves as an excellent family outing.  Following this path, we will experience a variety of animals, birds and plant life native the Homer area.  Evening at our hotel and time to discover the famous “Homer Spit” a long, narrow finger of land jutting 4.5 miles into Kachemak Bay and also offers some of the best eagle viewing in the state. It’s a great place to have dinner featuring local fare. Overnight in Homer.
Today’s walk from 2 to 3 hours

Day 4: June 18 – In Homer (B)
goat2bearsToday;’s touring is the Low Tide Tour and Coastal Forest Hike, as we take a boat ride across Kachemak Bay with opportunities to view marine birds and a seabird colony. Once onshore, we will be guided by our expert naturalists on a maintained forest trail system to experience the incredible richness exposed by Kachemak Bay’s extreme tidal changes first hand and a coastal forest ecosystem on the edge of the wilderness. We’ll view the evidence of the awesome geological forces that shaped the Bay, visit a bog, learn the names and lore of coastal plants, see what prehistoric people have left behind and have hands-on experiences with the many types of animals from the zone between Kachemak Bay’s tides. Kachemak Bay’s broad tidal range, among the largest in the world, and the rocky beaches in Peterson and China Poot Bay provide the opportunity for viewing and photographing an astonishing variety of colorful and fascinating marine animals. Time to relax at the Peterson Bay Field Station and have more close-up views of intertidal inhabitants at the Station’s aquaria and live tanks before returning to our hotel.
Today’s walk is 4-hours including the water taxi rides

Day 5:  June 19 – To Seward (B)
42_seals39_mooseWe board our van for the 3 to 4 hour ride to Seward. On the way, we will stop at the Exit GlacierVisitor Center for an easy 90-minute hike to the edge of the ice and experience a glacier up close and personal. Our naturalist guide provides insightful narration about the topography, vegetation and natural habitats of a glacial environment. Walking routes vary based on tour departure and may include the Overlook Loop Trail and/or the Nature Trail. We’ll learn how this magnificent chunk of ice has affected the geology, biology and even sea life centerthe weather in the beautiful Resurrection Valley. It’s a walk through a history book of nature as we make our way up to the face of this stunning glacier in Kenai Fjords National Park.  The day’s touring ends with a visit to the Alaska SeaLife Center. This is Alaska’s only public aquarium and ocean wildlife rescue center celebrating ten years on the shores of Resurrection Bay. We will enjoy this “window on the sea” as we experience close encounters with puffins, octopus, sea lions and other seal life. Overnight in Seward. Today’s walk 1 ½ hours.

Day 6: June 20- In Seward (B)
kayakingc day fiveAfter breakfast we start the day with some beach time in Alaska. This family friendly hike travels the former WWII military road to a ¼ mile long fine grained beach. It’s a great opportunity to see shore birds along with perhaps sea otters munching clam shells. Time to sit on the beach and enjoy the spectacular views of mountains and glaciers on the other side of the bay. Afterwards return to our hotel for the balance of the day and overnight at leisure in Seward.

Day 7:  June 21 – Seward – To Anchorage (B/L)
23Early morning breakfast and then depart for the Kenai Fjords National Park Cruise which will be about 6 hours. This is Alaska’s most popular wildlife and glacier cruise and provides us an in-depth experience of 37Kenai Fjords National Park’s abundant wildlife, alpine and tidewater glaciers.

Included will be a  visit to the Alaska Maritime National Wildlife Refuge, home to teeming seabird rookeries. Lunch will be included and we should be back at the pier about 2pm. Then we continue to Anchorage (a 2.5 hour drive) for our overnight at the Sheraton Anchorage Hotel.

Day 8:  June 22 – In Anchorage (D)
mine churchA day in Anchorage for independent exploration and will set up a day program including a nice farewell dinner.

Day 9: June 23 –  Anchorage to New York
Transfer to Airport for flight home

Hotels (or similar)

  1. Girdwood – June 15-17 (2 nts) The Hotel Alyeska
  2. Homer – June 17-19 (2 nts) Land’s End Resort
  3. Seward – June 19-21 (2 nts) Harbor 360 Hotel
  4. Anchorage – June 21-23 (2 nts) the Sheraton

Alyeska Resort

lands end resort
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