BASIC TRAIN: Alaska Railway offers all manner of
packages, some including accommodation in Denali National Park.
Round-trip fares from Anchorage to Fairbanks start at $420 per person. Round trip
from Anchorage to Denali start at $263 per person in shoulder season (May 15 through
June 7). Phone: (800) 544-0552; Web: http://www.alaskarailroad.com/.
AlaskaPass Inc. offers a flexible "12/21 Day" pass that allows you 12
days of discounted rail, bus and ferry travel within a 21-day period.
$899 for adults, $450 for children 2-11. Phone: (800) 248-7598; Web: http://www.alaskapass.com/.
-- DELUXE TRAIN: Though the trains of Alaska Railways travel year round, the deluxe carriages of Holland America and Princess Lines operate only mid- May to mid-September. Both offer flexible schedules with possible stays in Anchorage, Denali and Fairbanks. Contact Holland America Tours for the "McKinley Explorer" train: (800) 544-2206; http://www.graylineofalaska.com/. Train only: $220, one way Anchorage-Fairbanks. A three-night/four-day package with a six to eight hour Denali wildlife tour and overnights in Anchorage, Denali and Fairbanks costs $1,395 per couple, double occupancy, including all transfers but no meals. Contact Princess Line Tours & Hotels for the Midnight Sun Express train: (800) 426-0442; http://www.princessalaskalodges.com/. Good May 15 through Sept. 16, Anchorage to Fairbanks, train only, is $225; Anchorage to Fairbanks with one overnight in Denali is $275 per person, double occupancy.
-- DENALI NATIONAL PARK: Denali Park Resorts is authorized by the National Park Service to provide shuttle services and tours into Denali National Park. The shuttles operate from Memorial Day to late September. $17.50 to $33.00 for adults, plus a park entrance fee of $5 per person or $10 per group (up to eight members); half price for youth 14-17. The park also offers camper-bus passes for transport between camps. $18.50 for adults, plus park entrance fee; half price for youth 14-17.
Reservations are strongly encouraged, and you must first have the necessary backcountry or camping permits. For reservations, call (800) 622-7275 or visit http://www.denaliparkresorts.com/.
Margo Pfeiff last wrote for the Travel Section about Zambia.
Copyright 2002 SF Chronicle
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Updated Updated March 1, 2014