Featuring: Valdez, Cordova, Anchorage, Willow, Talkeetna, Fairbanks, Coldfoot
Day 1 Valdez, Alaska
Arrive at Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport and then hop aboard a flight to Valdez. Arrive in town and rendezvous with the heli-skiing operator and spend a day riding the steeps in Valdez. Overnight in Valdez.
Day 2 Cordova, Alaska
Take a flight or ferry from Valdez to Cordova for another day of adrenaline-pumping heli-skiing in secluded areas with the chance for plenty of first descents. Overnight in Cordova.
Day 3 Anchorage, Alaska
Fly back to Anchorage for the ceremonial start of the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race on the first Saturday in March. Head to downtown Anchorage to join the crowd and watch the mushers race through the streets. Also use it as an opportunity to check out one of the many sled dog tours or attend one of the zany events happening during Alaska’s largest and oldest winter festival, the Anchorage Fur Rendezvous.
Day 4 Willow, Alaska
Drive an hour to Willow for the official start of the Iditarod the next day. The mushers and their teams are focused on the trek to Nome, and you’ll feel the anticipation in the air. Cheer them on as they head out on the 1,000-mile journey across Alaska. Continue driving to Talkeena and spend the night. Be sure to watch for the northern lights, which will be hard to miss.
Day 5 Talkeetna, Alaska
Enjoy the day in Talkeetna, the quaint, base-camp town for many mountaineers hoping to climb Denali. Begin with an unforgettable breakfast of sourdough pancakes, cinnamon rolls or — what the heck — a slice of pie at the Talkeetna Roadhouse. Take a flightseeing tour around Denali. Snowshoe or ski along the extensive trails before returning to Anchorage for the night.
Day 6 Fairbanks, Alaska
Fly to Fairbanks. While waiting for a chance to watch the northern lights, enjoy the sights of the Golden Heart City. Shop for Alaska Native art and jewelry, check out the stunning ice carvings at the World Ice Art Championships, go cross-country skiing or take a snowmobile tour. Once it’s dark, bundle up, grab your camera and catch a glimpse of the aurora borealis. Overnight in Fairbanks.
Day 7 Coldfoot, Alaska
Take a day tour from Fairbanks to Coldfoot. Spend the day around a dog kennel learning how the dogs are cared for, how they train for races and if you’re lucky, cuddle with a puppy. Later in the day, try your hand at mushing or ride in the basket of the sled with a local musher. Once the stars come out, you’ll have another chance to try your luck with the northern lights. Return to Fairbanks for your last Alaska night.