- Ages: 12 years +
- Duration: 7 Days
- Begins / Ends: Kenai, AK
- Location: Lake Clark National Park
- Exertion: Moderate (to strenuous)
- Season: May – September
- Price: $4,499 per person
*Minimum: 4 participants per trip required to guarantee
Ask us about custom dates for individuals, couples, families, and groups.
TRIP DETAILS & ITINERARY
BEARS & BEACHES BACKPACKING
“Hike amongst the bears, the rivers, and enjoy the serene peacefulness of remote Alaskan wilderness.”
Experience backpacking in Lake Clark National Park observing migrating Alaska brown bears. Travel by your own two feet well over 40 miles. Camp in a new place every night as you discover incredible viewpoints and see the Alaska brown bears in their natural habitat. A magnificent backpacking experience, this is the crown jewel bear viewing backpacking trip in Alaska! The highlight, and the reason most people take this trip is to see the Alaskan Coastal Brown Bear in its natural habitat away from crowded platforms. Camping in a new spot every night, and taking short side hikes to wildlife spotting areas, caters to the explorer.
DAY 1: ARRIVAL > KENAI > BACKCOUNTRY
Today you’ll arrive in Kenai by plane or car. Arrival can be anytime before 10:00am. Your KBA guide will greet you at the Kenai Airport (if flying), or at our Kenai flight office (if driving). At 11:00am we begin with a group orientation meeting, gear check, weights & measures, safety briefing, and discussion of our overall trip plan – lunch will be hosted by KBA during the meeting. Between 3:30-4:00pm we begin staging our gear to be loaded on the bush plane. When ready to take flight, we’ll load all of our gear for the trip, and fly out around 4:30pm. Arrival in the backcountry is welcomed with a sense of awe and wonder as you gaze upon the magnificent scenery surrounding you. Our first objective will be to get camp set up and squared away, and following this we’ll head out for an evening hike and give you a glimpse of your backcountry playground for the next few days. Depending on the zone, and overall route, we may backpack a short segment this day.
Meals Included: Welcome lunch, and backcountry dinner
Accommodation: Under tent
DAY 2 to 6: LAKE CLARK NATIONAL PARK – BACKPACKING
Every day brings a new adventure in this remote stretch of Lake Clark National Park. Our daily objective is to view bears in their natural habitat doing what they do best. Sightings usually occur throughout the day, and evenings. Some days will consist of more hiking than others, and some days will be spent watching bears for hours and hours. The hiking portion takes you through a rarely visited bear sanctuary where explorers are often rewarded with amazing bear viewing and wildlife spotting. We also explore other areas, and take side trips as our schedule permits. Your days will be fulfilling and rewarding and you’ll make camp in a new locations throughout the trip with amazing views of mountain ranges, volcanoes, and Cook Inlet.
All meals included (B, L, D)
Distance: 3-7+ miles, daily average
Accommodation: Under tent
DAY 7: LAKE CLARK NATIONAL PARK > KENAI
Today will be your last day in the backcountry with your neighbors – the bears. We’ll spend the morning and part of the afternoon watching bears and soaking up our last day in the backcountry. This afternoon, our bush plane will pick us up and fly us back to Kenai. The flight is exhilarating and you’ll get a bird’s eye view of the massive landscape which you’ve just trekked. This will really put your accomplishment into perspective. We generally arrive back to the mainland around mid-to-late-afternoon. Once we arrive back to the flight office, we’ll exchange some high-fives, goodbyes and your KBA Guides will transport you to the Kenai Airport. If you are returning home this evening, please be sure to schedule your Kenai flight for after 10:00pm.
Meals included: Breakfast & lunch
Distance: 3 miles
*The accompanying itinerary is the schedule we intend to follow. However, this is Alaska, and our trips may deviate as written on this page or in any documentation we publish. This can be as a result of weather conditions, group preference, safety considerations, or unforeseeable circumstances. Therefore expect the unexpected, and prepare to be flexible.
This is an all-inclusive adventure, meaning everything is included in your price apart from your flights to and from Alaska, personal gear, gratuities for guides, and voluntary expenditures. You trip package includes:
- Accommodations: 6 nights tent camping
- Round-trip ground transportation (Kenai Airport<>Flight Office)
- Round-trip bush plane flights (Kenai<>Backcountry)
- Meals as indicated in the itinerary
- Professional guide service
- Expedition tents
- Satellite phone, GPS, maps, location tracker
- Medical kits, and repair gear
- Trekking poles
- Gathering/cook tent
- Cooking equipment, eating utensils, bowl/plate, and hot drink mug
- Water filtration equipment
- Bear resistant canisters
- Electric bear fence(s)
- Guides prepare and cook all meals
- Guides setup and take down entire camp (option to assist)
LOGISTICS & FAQ
What is the best way to get to Kenai?
Plan to fly into the Anchorage International Airport (ANC), and then take a 25 minute flight from ANC to Kenai Airport (ENA). Or you can rent a car in Anchorage and then drive to Kenai (~3 hours). Either way you will need to be in Kenai by 10:00am on Day 1. Kenai Airport also has rental cars should you decide to turn your car in before your trip, or rent a car after your trip. KBA will provide transportation between the Kenai Airport and our flight office.
What are the accommodations like?
Accommodations on day 1 thru 7 is double occupancy tent camping in the backcountry.
Can solo travelers get their own tent? Is there an optional or forced supplement, and how much is it?
As a solo traveler, a single supplement of $250 per person applies to tent camping Day 1 thru 7.
What is the food like?
Proper nutrition in the backcountry is paramount for stamina and recovery. We create gourmet masterpieces from scratch that are healthy, filling, and delicious leaving your palate (and belly!) satisfied. Everything from cinnamon rolls and vanilla pancakes for breakfast, to spaghetti with meatballs for dinner, finished off with cheesecake for dessert.
How much extra money should people budget?
Kenai Backcountry Adventures recommends that you bring $500 cash for guide gratuities, in-town spending money, souvenirs, additional meals, etc.
What should people bring? Do you have a packing list?
A detailed backpacking gear list will be provided with your booking confirmation. Or you can view the GEAR LIST now (select “Backpacking Trips”).
Is travel insurance required?
Travel insurance is required for this trip. Review our Travel Insurance page for more info.
Additional frequently asked questions and answers:
Are bears and other wildlife going to be a problem?
Bears are virtually everywhere in Alaska, and therefore one should anticipate and be prepared for a possible encounter or sighting of a bear. Moose are a common sighting on the Kenai Peninsula but generally they keep their distance. Kenai Backcountry Adventures takes wildlife safety very seriously and therefore take precautions to keep you safe in the wilderness. In addition, you will learn the necessary safety procedures regarding Alaska wildlife in your pre-backcountry safety orientation.
Will there be bugs?
The most common nuisance bugs are mosquitoes and no-see-ums. However, based on the time of year and current weather conditions insects may or may not present an issue. Generally, there are only a few areas we tend to encounter mosquitoes along our route. Come prepared with insect repellant and a high quality head net.
What will the weather be like?
Weather in this part of Alaska is highly variable and unpredictable. It could be in the 70s or 80s one day and in the 50s and raining the next (or in the same day!). We may encounter snow at higher elevations. High winds can be frequent and may impede travel at times.
It’s best to plan a buffer day at the end of the trip in the event of a weather delay departing the backcountry on the last day, however if you must make flight arrangements to depart Kenai on the last day of the itinerary, please make your flight departure for after 10:00 pm.
- Airfare/Travel to and from Kenai, AK, before and after your trip
- Meals not indicated in the itinerary
- Travel Insurance (required)
- Single supplement ($250)
- Personal gear (rain gear, clothing, sleeping bag & pad, backpack, etc.)
- Additional lodging nights due to weather delays (in town)
- Additional meals due to weather delays (in town)
- Alcoholic beverages
- Gratuities for your guides (recommended)