Located in the heart of Kenai National Wildlife Refuge on the shores of glacier-carved Skilak Lake, Kenai Backcountry Lodge is a remote wilderness retreat. Accessible only by boat, this historic property offers a chance to relax and reconnect with nature far from busy tourist areas. Activities are designed to highlight the stunning landscape, including the magnificent Cottonwood Trail overlooking the surrounding mountains and Skilak Lake below.
Cozy guest cabins are nestled into the forest and just steps away from the outdoor gazebo, wood-fired sauna and main lodge. Fresh and Alaskan-sourced gourmet meals are always a highlight of Alaska Wildland trips, and ask about the custom hydro-electric system, which utilizes the power of a nearby creek to lessen the dependence on generators.
Trip lengths and activities are customizable: choose a trip starting at four days, and have the flexibility of choosing your own dates. Round trip ground transportation, accommodations, activities and delicious meals are included to make this an independent but seamless adventure!
Start your trip with a drive south from Anchorage along Turnagain Arm to the town of Cooper Landing and our Kenai Riverside Lodge. Enjoy a hearty, freshly-prepared dinner and settle into your cozy cabin. The next day, gear up for a full day raft trip down the Kenai River and through Kenai Canyon, enjoying the beautiful turquoise water and the mild Class II+ rapids! Finish this adventure with a scenic exploration on Skilak Lake before arriving at Kenai Backcountry Lodge. Enjoy another day and night at this historic eco-lodge, relaxing on the screened-in gazebo or wood-fired sauna and hiking up to stunning panoramic views. On your final day, return to Kenai Riverside Lodge and then enjoy comfortable transportation back to Anchorage.
The sample itinerary below shows a 4 day/3 night stay. Contact us for other trip length options and pricing.
Self-Drive Option: For independent travelers, we have two self-drive options:
- Arrive at Kenai Riverside Lodge between 4 and 6 p.m. on Day 1 to check in before dinner is served at 6:45 p.m.
- Arrive at Kenai Riverside Lodge by 9 a.m. on Day 2 for rafting to Kenai Backcountry Lodge. Otherwise, you’ll enjoy the same 3 day/2 night experience as our all-inclusive guests. Please get in touch with any questions!
Arrive in Alaska with enough time to ensure you can meet your Alaska Wildland Adventures representative at your downtown hotel between 2:00 p.m. and 2:30 p.m. or at the Anchorage Airport at 3:00 p.m.
Shuttle by small passenger van along Turnagain Arm to Cooper Landing, home of our Kenai Riverside Lodge. Upon arrival, settle into your cabin, enjoy dinner in the lodge and discuss your upcoming activity days with our knowledgeable staff. Overnight at Kenai Riverside Lodge.
Gear up for a rafting adventure into the heart of the Kenai National Wildlife Refuge and explore at the river's pace! Watch for moose, bears, bald eagles and other bird species and enjoy a delicious picnic lunch along the river or on the shores of Skilak Lake before arriving at Kenai Backcountry Lodge in the late afternoon to settle into your cabin and enjoy a freshly-prepared dinner served by candlelight. Overnight at Kenai Backcountry Lodge.
Spend a full day exploring the remote wilderness of Kenai National Wildlife Refuge. Hike a secluded trail and at the top, explore the tundra and enjoy captivating views of the lake and surrounding wilderness. Return to the lodge in the afternoon and enjoy the wood-fired sauna or simply relax at the lodge. Depending on the weather, options for the evening may include an exploration of the lake by sturdy touring kayak or fireside natural history presentation by one of the lodge's guides. Overnight at Kenai Backcountry Lodge.
Bid farewell to Kenai Backcountry Lodge after a hearty breakfast this morning and travel by van back to Anchorage, enjoying the beautiful Chugach Mountains and views of Cook Inlet, arriving at approximately noon.
You will arrive back in Anchorage by approximately 12:00 p.m. on the last day of your journey. See the "Alaska Travel Information" section of your Trip Planning Booklet for recommended lodging. If you choose to fly home today, we suggest you book a flight that departs after 3:00 p.m. in case of possible transportation delays.
Kenai Riverside Lodge: Located right on the banks of the turquoise Kenai River. Guest cabins are nestled into the trees surrounding the main lodge and have the rustic charm of historic pioneer cabins with modern comforts like heat, lights, private bath, comfy beds and Adirondack chairs on the front porch. Our cozy cabins accommodate up to four people.
Kenai Backcountry Lodge: Located on a glacier-carved lake accessible only by boat. Nine guest cabins in wooded settings are connected to the historic main lodge by gravel pathways and boardwalks. The newly renovated guest cabins each have a minimum of two comfy beds, a private bath and shower, a private porch and propane light and heat. Electrical outlets for recharging electronics are available in the main lodge and other public spaces on the property; we are able to support CPAP machines in certain cabins.
4 days/3 nights – Adult $2250; Child $1810
Please inquire about rates for longer stays.
Trip prices are in U.S. dollars excluding taxes and fuel surcharges, when applicable. Prices are per person, based on double occupancy; solo traveler rates apply. Please ask about discounts for triple/quadruple occupancy, when available. Trip price includes all meals, accommodations and activities as noted. Optional special interest activities may be offered at the lodge for an additional fee. Trip price does not include tax, applicable fuel surcharge(s), alcoholic beverages, gratuities to staff, or items of a personal nature.
All trip prices are based on double occupancy. Taxes and seasonal fuel surcharges, when applicable, are not included in trip price and are subject to change prior to trip departure. We accept checks, MasterCard, Visa and Discover.
|Payment Schedule:||Amount Due per Person:|
|121+ days prior to departure:||$1,000 or 50% of trip total, whichever is less|
|120 to 61 days:||50% of total|
|Within 60 days:||100% of total|
Reservations made within 60 days must be guaranteed with MasterCard, Visa or Discover. Late payments may result in releasing your reservation and rebooking will be subject to availability. Cancellation fees will apply.
Upon receipt of your initial deposit, we will send you written confirmation, trip planning materials and a travel insurance application. We recommend that you purchase travel insurance.
Our policies go into effect at the time of book and upon receipt of deposit. Written cancellations and changes must be received in our reservations office to be valid. Non-appearance for program will result in no refund. We strongly recommend that you purchase travel insurance.
If the cancellation or change occurs:
|121+ days prior to departure:||The fee is $300 or 10% of trip total, per person, whichever is less|
|120 to 91 days:||The fee is $600 or 20% of trip total, per person, whichever is less|
|90 to 46 days:||50% of total trip cost, per person|
|Within 45 days:||100% of total trip cost, per person|
No refunds will be made on individual features, transfers or sightseeing voluntarily omitted by the participant. No refunds for unused services will be issued. Our tours operate rain or shine. Refunds for cancelled flights or any services reserved outside of Alaska Wildland Adventures will be made in accordance with the rules of the carrier.
We recommend that you purchase a travel protection plan to help protect you and your travel investment against the unexpected. Travel protection plans can include coverage for Trip Cancellation, Trip Interruption, Emergency Medical and Emergency Evacuation/Repatriation, Trip Delay, Baggage Delay and more.
A Note About Occupancy
In addition to our standard double occupancy, we also offer solo supplement, triple and quad pricing options for our Alaska adventure vacations. Requested solo accommodations, when available, are subject to a solo supplement fee; however, for a solo traveler interested in sharing accommodations with another same sex traveler, we will make every effort to pair you, and the solo supplement fee will be waived. Occasionally, pairing is not possible and a “forced solo” rate will apply during the Alaska vacation. If you are a solo traveler and you’d like to experience an Alaska vacation with Alaska Wildland Adventures, we will do all we can to have you join us!
Please visit Our Policies for additional information.
We want you to have everything you need to be comfortable during your trip with us. Plan your travel wardrobe around informal and comfortable clothing; even at mealtimes, dress is casual.
The weather in Alaska is quite variable so clothing which can be layered is ideal. Of special note is to make sure you bring a high quality rain suit so that even if it rains, you can stay comfortable outdoors and have an enjoyable experience. Items made of wool or synthetic fabric remain comfortable and warm even when wet. Cotton is not recommended for Alaska outdoor activities as the fabric does not easily dry and won’t help keep you warm once wet.
The summer in Alaskan is usually quite mild with temperatures in the fifties and sixties. We liken the Alaska summer to spring or fall in other parts of the country. The most reliable advice is to be prepared for any type of weather! We have found that when our gear and spirits are well suited, the weather is always perfect.
For a complete item-by-item list, visit our Packing List page. Please note that this packing list is designed for a trip eight to nine days in length. You will need most items on this list and we’ve provided an “Optional Items” section for other things that we find useful in Alaska’s backcountry. Also note that there are no laundry facilities available at our wilderness lodges.