Alaska’s tourism season begins with new offers from various touring companies across the state, including a bear-viewing sanctuary, gold mine tours, heli-fishing, and a Mount McKinley museum exhibit.
The Alaska Wildlife Convention Center will open their bear-viewing boardwalk on Sunday, May 12th, about 50 miles south of Anchorage. Visitors can observe black and brown bears in the 17-acre feature, part of the Bears Education Awareness Research Sanctuary (BEARS). In conjunction with the boardwalk, the Center also constructed a housing facility for interns studying Alaskan wildlife, the ground floor of which acts as an animal shelter. For more information on Convention Center, visit www.alaskawildlife.com.
Gold Mine Safari Tours has designed a new mine tour to explore south-central Alaska’s gold rush history. Visitors will embark from Gridwood in 6 wheeled trucks called Pinzgauers, off-roading along the Iditarod Trail until reaching Crow Creek Mine, one of the largest goldmines in the area that is over 100 years old. There, they embark and explore the mine with a guide, then traverse to an active nearby mine and try their luck panning for gold. For more information visit www.alyeskatours.com.
For travelers seeking a remote Alaskan experience, the award-wining luxury destination Tsaina Lodge is offering heli-fishing additions to their adventure packages in July and August. The fishing trips grant visitors access to exclusive, far-removed waters. Guests may also sign up for wildlife tours and deep sea halibut and shark charters in the Prince William Sound, or enjoy ice climbing, sea kayaking, and white water rafting. Packages start at $1,650 for three nights, for more information visit www.tsaina.com.
The Mount McKinley anniversary exhibit opens this month at the University of Alaska Museum of the North, in Denali National Park. The installation recounts the first ascent of Mount McKinley through original journals and artifacts, plus a scaled model of the mountain illustrating possible hiking routes. It runs May 18th, 2013 through April 12, 2014. For more information visit www.uaf.edu/museum.