ALASKA: Katmai – The Valley of Ten Thousand Smokes

PRICE TRAVEL: from 2995

Alaska

A spectacular 10-days trekking trip in the Alaska’s untouched wilderness, exploring the breathtaking landscapes of the Valley of Ten Thousand Smokes, the place for one of the most devastating eruptions recorded: Novarupta in 1912. An amazing experience surrounded by wonderful wildlife where you will have the opportunity of seeing the majestic grizzly bears at Brooks River.

travel code

ALASKA001

bespoke departures:

Jul 30 – Aug 8,
Aug 20-29, Sep 3-12, 2015

Ask for other departures

groups:

4/8 MIN/MAX

availibility

Available

destination:

Alaska

type:

Landscapes, Volcanoes & Wildlife

duration:

10 days

CLIMATE:

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DIFFICULTY:

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PHYSICAL STRENGTH:

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MORE INFORMATION

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Alaska

What remains today is a vast area known as the Valley of 10,000 Smokes, and, even 100 years after the cataclysmic eruption, the landscape still bears the scars. Brimming with adventurous possibility and inviting exploration, Katmai’s Valley of 10,000 Smokes is a backpackers dream. Rimmed with active, glaciated volcanoes, and blanketed with a hiker-friendly surface of sand and ash from the massive 1912 eruption, the Valley is a must-see for anyone with a “peak” experience in mind. After flying from Anchorage to King Salmon, you and your guide will then hop in a float plane for the bush flight from King Salmon to the world famous Brooks Camp where we’ll spend the night in the local campground. Here you’ll have the chance to witness the annual bear viewing spectacle, before heading out to the valley by bus on Day 3. From the 3 Forks visitor center we will begin our circumnavigation of the valley floor, with stops along the way to attempt non-technical ascents of Broken Mountain, Fallen Mountain, Baked Mountian, Cerebrus, and maybe even Mt. Griggs. Let’s join this amazing adventure in Katmai and the Valley of Ten Thousand Smokes and experience wilderness like nowhere else on Earth.

Tour Itinerary

Day 1 – Your trip begins today in Anchorage, Alaska. You can arrive at any time and enjoy our complimentary airport shuttle. You’ll be staying at the Susitna Place or the Copper Whale Inn, which are both located close to the airport and adjacent to downtown Anchorage. Depending on your arrival time, the remainder of the day is yours to relax after your flight or to explore some of the city’s notable sites including the Anchorage Museum of History & Art or the city Park Strip. This afternoon, you’ll meet your guide at 4PM and head to our Anchorage facility for an orientation and gear check, followed by a group dinner featuring gourmet pizza and local craft brews. The orientation will include a discussion of the route, an introduction to our unique style of Alaska wilderness travel, a familiarization of the principles of Leave No Trace, and a conversation about traveling safely in bear country. Dinner & accommodations included.

Day 2– After a sumptuous breakfast at the B&B, you’ll meet your guide, load up and transfer to the airport for the flight flight to King Salmon, a small fishing town on the Naknek River near the Bering Sea coast. Once in King Salmon, you’ll gather gear, and board a float plane bound for Brooks Camp. Here, you’ll have a chance to view the famous brown bears of the Brooks River, camp at the famous campground, and prepare for tomorrow’s bus ride into the Valley. All meals included. Distance: 2-3 miles

Day 3 – After breaking camp and adjusting our packs, we board the Valley of 10,000 Smokes bus and leave this outpost of civilization behind. The 26-mile bus ride will take you along Margot Creek, through a beautiful boreal forest, across two more creeks, and eventually to the Three Forks Visitor Center. It will be here that we leave the rest of the tourists behind, and step foot into the Katmai wilderness. The Valley’s eerie landscape reflects the power of the eruption that buried the valley floor under 700 feet of pumice and ash and dotted the surface of this lunar-like topography with thousands of steam vents (fumaroles). Nearly a century of harsh weather has enhanced the beauty of the Valley of 10,000 Smokes, and one can now gaze into river canyons hundreds of feet deep where the layers of pumice and ash have been slowly eroded by the channeled rain and snow melt. As we hoist our packs and head to the valley floor, we will immediately see the effect that this powerful and historic event had on the landscape. Our goal today will be the clear water of Mageik Lake – 12 miles from our drop-off. On the way, we’ll be sure to revel in our surroundings and enjoy the route between the Buttress Range and the slot canyon that is the River Lethe. We’ll have the glaciated Mt. Mageik in our sights throughout the day. As we enjoy our first meal in the valley, we’ll discuss efficient climbing techniques and our upcoming hikes of the peaks within our viewshed. All meals included. Distance: 8-12 miles

Day 4 to day 9 – We’ll spend the next few days exploring the Valley of 10,000 Smokes. If the weather is kind and our legs primed, we’ll attempt non-technical ascents of Falling Mountain, both Baked & Broken Mountans, Cerebrus and perhaps even Mt. Griggs – summits that will give you amazing views of the valley floor, Novarupta, and the glaciated peaks of the Aleutian Range. While success achieving all these summits is slim and often prevented by inclement weather in the high mountains, the Valley always reveals amazing secrets and absolutely breathtaking landscapes. Regardless of the final summit tally, you’ll enjoy a backpacking adventure of a lifetime exploring this most amazing and highly regarded national park. All meals included. Average daily distance: 8-10 miles.

Day 10 – After enjoying a final night at Juhle Creek, a clearwater stream that forms an oasis at the rim of the valley beneath Griggs Volcano, we’ll trek the final miles to our pick-up point at Three Forks, and celebrate the accomplishment of circumnavigating this unique and amazing geologic oddity. The bus will deposit us back at Brooks Camp and an awaiting float plane. The flight out should yield one last sighting of the amazing bruins that call the Brooks River home. From King Salmon, we’ll catch a flight back to Anchorage. If you are leaving Alaska on this day, please make certain that you schedule all homebound flights from Anchorage for after 10 PM. Better yet, opt to spend another night in Anchorage. Breakfast & lunch included. Distance: 12 miles

MAPS & AREA

Mapa de Alaska

OPEN FULL MAP

Included

  • All group gear: Expedition quality tents, group tarp, all cooking equipment & eating utensils, safety Equipment: Satellite phone, maps, GPS, and medical kit, Trekking poles
  • Complementary airport transfer
  • Lodging on night one at a local B&B or hotel in Anchorage
  • Roundtrip air transportation from Anchorage to King Salmon
  • Roundtrip floatplane transportation from King Salmon to Brooks Camp
  • Roundtrip Bus transportation from Brooks Camp to the Valley of Ten Thousand Smokes
  • Professional guide service at a maximum 4:1 client to guide ratio
  • All meals from dinner on day one through lunch on the final day of the itinerary
  • Storage for your extra travel items while in the field

Not Included

  • Flights to and from Alaska
  • Lodging prior to and after your trip
  • Visa
  • Personal gear (sleeping bags, packs, rain gear, etc.)
  • Personal expenses
  • Travel and Trip Cancellation Insurance
  • All the services not specified in the section “included”

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