Camp Denali Invites Travelers to Explore Denali’s Untouched Wilderness in 2024: Introducing New Speaker Series for Nature Enthusiasts

Guests walking through grassy nature at Camp Denali

(IN SHORT) Camp Denali, located in Denali National Park, is reopening its doors to adventure travelers on June 3, offering a unique backcountry experience away from the crowds. Accessible only via fly-in due to road closures, the lodge provides guests with stunning views of Denali and the Alaska Range. The 2024 summer season will feature a speaker series with experts in various fields, educating guests on topics such as wildlife, geology, indigenous culture, climate change, and photography. Additionally, guests can enjoy guided hikes, wildlife observation, and other outdoor activities, all while experiencing sustainable practices in action.

(PRESS RELEASE) DENALI NATIONAL PARK, Alaska, 2024-Feb-28 — /Travel PR News/ — Camp Denali, nestled at the 89-mile marker in Denali National Park will reopen June 3 to adventure travelers eager to access Denali’s backcountry. While the park’s road remains closed until 2027 at mile 43, Camp Denali will welcome guests back by offering fly-in access which includes a flightseeing tour of Denali along the spine of the Alaska Range, over glaciers, and alongside Denali’s massive north face before landing near Camp Denali. Half of one of the country’s most beautiful national parks is off-limits to nearly all visitors making the next three summers the perfect time to experience the beating heart of Denali without the crowds. The family-owned and operated lodge since 1952 is pleased to announce its 2024 summer speaker series, wildlife observation, and guided nature excursions in the wilderness heart of Denali.

“The absence of tour buses beyond mile marker 43, affords guests the rare opportunity to experience the park with virtually no traffic, and more opportunities to look for Denali’s charismatic megafauna on walking or driving safaris including grizzly bears, moose, caribou, Dall sheep, and wolves. Peak visitation in 2019 was roughly 600,000 visitors over the 100-day season and over 100 buses daily. With rare exception, the only traffic on the majority of the western road these days is one or two Camp Denali passenger vans per day,” shares owner Simon Hamm.

With nineteen private, rustically elegant cabins each with direct views of Denali and adjacent peaks of the Alaska Range mountains, Camp Denali’s historic operator status with the National Park gives them the exclusive ability to travel through the park and lead naturalist-guided hikes in the wilderness backcountry. Being able to linger longer with wildlife sightings without the interruption of traffic and traversing alpine ridges, cobbled stream valleys, and tundra ponds without any other humans in view are unique opportunities for guests for the next three years. It is also the only lodge allowed to moor canoes at Wonder Lake, an iconic 2.5-mile-long lake close enough to reflect Denali itself on calm days. Accessible only by private charter, Camp Denali’s guests will enjoy a flightseeing tour of Denali, viewing glaciers, mountains, and tundra lowlands from the air upon arrival. Weather permitting, the flight will also include a close-up fly-by of Denali and Alaska Range glaciers and high peaks.

Summer Speaker Series: 

Camp Denali hosts this series to provide biologists, ornithologists, conservationists, photographers, writers and more with a platform to share their expertise and passions. The Summer Speaker Series aims to educate guests about the sub-arctic ecology, geology, history, indigenous peoples, and the changing landscape of Denali. This season’s 2024 experts include:

Dr. Jon Atwood | Conservationist & Ornithologist | June 3-7 | Full-life Cycle Bird Migration & Changing Bird Names

  • Jon currently works as a guide for Naturalist Journeys. Dr. Atwood will be joining us during the peak of migration and nesting season in Denali National Park. During this session, guests will spend days exploring the tundra with an eye and ear toward the sky and the evenings learning more about full-cycle bird migration and the recently announced changes to many bird names. Bringing an enthusiasm for birding and a commitment to practical conservation, Jon – along with his wife Polly Pattison, a talented environmental educator, musician and poet – is excited to share with you the experience of Camp Denali! 

Roger Robinson | Mountain/Rescue Ranger & Conservationist | June 7-10 | Reflections on 40 Years of Mountaineering the Alaska Range

  • Roger made his first climb of Denali in 1975 when he was 21. Roger was hired as a Denali National Park climbing ranger for the 1980 season, which provided the opportunity to instigate the urgent changes needed to make climbing safer and slowly bring back a pristine mountain. Roger met his wife Pam in 1983 on a Sierra Club Service project. They are excited to share their love of Denali National Park with Camp Denali’s guests and employees during their stay.

Sarah Roeske, Ph.D. | Research Geologist, Earth and Planetary Sciences, University of California, Davis | June 24-July 1 | The Geology Around Camp Denali: Mountain building, earthquakes & their role in shaping the Alaska Range

  • Sarah Roeske brings more than 40 years of experience studying Alaskan geology and Cordilleran plate tectonics. Sarah’s evening programs will cover general geology topics that are relevant to the Alaska Range in the vicinity of Camp Denali. One will focus on mountain building processes and explore why the highest peak in North America is far from an active plate boundary (and in Camp Denali’s front yard view!). Another evening discussion will be on earthquakes in general and specifically why Alaska has so many of them, and their role in shaping the landscape around Camp Denali. In addition Sarah will bring maps along on the naturalist walks to help us visualize the geology immediately around us.

Susan Paskvan | Former Native Language Coordinator of Yukon-Koyukuk School District | July 1-8 | Connections to the Land through Indigenous Language Revitalization

  • Susan Paskvan, known as “K’etsoo” in Denaakk’e (Koyukon Athabascan) is the daughter of Benedict and Eliza Jones of Koyukuk, Alaska. She was the Native Language Coordinator of the Yukon-Koyukuk School District, which serves ten Interior Alaska Schools. Throughout her fifteen years at Y-KSD Susan has worked with many elders to document Native place names throughout the Interior; genealogy; traditional memorial songs and stories. Susan will do a presentation on traditional Athabascan origin stories, teach some bird songs, and discuss the revitalization of indigenous languages.

Carolyn Finney, Ph.D. | Author and Storyteller | James Edward Mills | Journalist and Author | July 15-22 | A Celebration and Continuing Conversation: The 10th anniversary of Finney’s Black Faces, White Faces and Mills’ The Adventure Gap

  • Carolyn Finney, Ph.D. is a storyteller, author, and cultural geographer. Along with public speaking, writing, media engagements, consulting & teaching, she served on the U.S. National Parks Advisory Board for eight years. 

  • James Edward Mills is a freelance journalist who specializes in telling stories about outdoor recreation, environmental conservation, acts of charitable giving, and practices of sustainable living. He has worked in the outdoor industry since 1989 as a guide, outfitter, independent sales representative, writer, and photographer. 

  • Long-time friends and colleagues, James and Carolyn are celebrating the 10th anniversary of their respective books: The Adventure Gap and Black Faces, White Spaces. Their presentations will touch on topics of identity, difference, outdoor recreation, and environmental conservation.

Ben Rawlence | Award-winning writer, activist, & former speech writer to Sir Menzies Campbell and Charles Kenndy | July 22-29 | The Last Forest & the Future of Life on Earth: An exploration into the importance of the boreal forest

  • Ben Rawlence wrote two books about the human consequences of environmental catastrophe in Africa: Radio Congo and City of Thorns. After moving to Wales, his attention turned to the Arctic Circle and the boreal forest. What he discovered led to his third book: The Treeline. Ben will explore how the treeline can be a lens to see change in the Alaskan landscape and the prehistoric Arctic.

Dr. Nikoosh Carlo, Ph.D. | CEO of CNC North Consulting | July 29-August 2 | Indigenous-led Climate Solutions in the Arctic & beyond 

  • Dr. Nikoosh Carlo is Koyukon Athabascan and CEO of CNC North Consulting. Dr. Carlo’s recent work focuses on driving transformative change in the finance sector to support Indigenous-led climate solutions in the Arctic and beyond. In April 2022, President Biden appointed Dr. Carlo to serve as an academic member of the U.S. Arctic Research Commission, an independent federal agency that advises the president and Congress on domestic and international Arctic research. 

Princess Daazhraii Johnson | Writer, Actor, Producer | August 9-12 | Narrative Sovereignty: The power of telling your own stories

  • Princess Daazhraii Johnson (she/her) is Neets’aii Gwich’in and lives with her three sons, daughter, and partner on lower Tanana Dene lands in Alaska. In 2015 she was appointed by President Obama to serve on the Board of Trustees for the Institute of American Indian Arts. Princess has a background in environmental and science education and will draw upon this, as well as her experience as a screenwriter, actor, and producer to share the importance and empowerment of Indigenous peoples having sovereignty over their own narratives.

Pam Sousanes | Physical Scientist | August 16-19 | The Science of Climate Change in Alaska & Beyond 

  • Pam Sousanes has lived and worked in Alaska for more than 30 years. She’s part of a team of scientists who gather and analyze information on natural resources in the Alaska National Parks. Pam will be discussing the science of climate change in Alaska—and beyond. She’ll also share stories from the field, including encounters with muskox, bears, and porcupines. She’ll highlight some interesting Alaska weather facts, share a few personal stories about collecting data in a time of rapid change, and take you on a photo journey to a remote Arctic mountain pass with unbelievably cold wind-chill temperatures.

Ronn & Marketa Murray | Aurora Borealis Experts & Photographers | August 19-26 | Northern Lights Exploration 

  • Ronn and Marketa Murray are a husband and wife team, both in life and in business. They will be discussing the science behind the Aurora Borealis – why and how they occur, and when and where are the best times to see them. Additionally, they’ll spend an evening discussing the best way to capture the northern lights in pictures and lead a nighttime excursion to look for and photograph the aurora.

Ralph Clevenger | Photographer | August 26-September 2 | Autumn Photography Workshop

  • Ralph Clevenger holds degrees in both zoology and photography and was a senior faculty member at the prestigious Brooks Institute of Photography in Santa Barbara, CA for 33 years. Ralph has photographed assignments and led workshops around the world, and this will be his ninth trip to Camp Denali. Ralph will emphasize the importance of pushing your boundaries to create unique ways of seeing. And he realizes that understanding those complex cameras and processing software is critical to creating great images so bring your questions.

Camp Denali’s Commitment to Sustainability: A member of Regenerative Travel and Adventure Green Alaska Camp Denali is firmly committed to fostering stewardship of Denali National Park. Located 90 miles from the nearest power grid, Camp Denali has harnessed the benefits of renewable energy for most of its history. From its first hydroelectric system, developed in 1981, to subsequent passive-solar hot water and a new 90-kilowatt photovoltaic system, Camp Denali now generates 96% of its electricity from renewable sources. 100% of the meat and seafood served at Camp Denali is Alaskan including salmon, reindeer, chicken, and more. Lambs, hogs, and turkeys consumed at Camp Denali are raised at Blood, Sweat, and Food Farms in Homer, Alaska. Vegan and vegetarian entrees are available at each meal as well as gluten and dairy-free options. The on-site, off-grid greenhouse and gardens provide nearly 100% of the salad greens, cooking greens, sandwich lettuce, herbs, radishes, peas, in-season vegetables, and edible flowers. Camp Denali partners with the Fairbanks Carbon Reduction Fund, as direct contributors, and offers guests an opt-in opportunity to offset their own travel-related carbon emissions. All proceeds are used locally in Fairbanks Alaska to improve the heating efficiency of low-income housing, directly reducing fuel consumption and carbon emissions. Camp Denali also contributes direct and in-kind support to local and in-state organizations that focus on land conservation, education, environmental stewardship, advocacy, and community

The 2024 summer season at Camp Denali extends from June 3 – September 9. Rates are $1,325 per night per person with a 3-night minimum inclusive of accommodations, Denali National Park entrance fee, meals, lodging, naturalist-guided hiking, evening programs, use of canoes, bikes, fishing equipment, and outdoor gear. Camp Denali is accessible from Anchorage International (ANC) or Fairbanks International Airport (FAI) followed by a car, bus, or train to Denali Park. A required private charter from the park entrance to Camp Denali is $700 per person round trip and includes a 55-minute inbound flightseeing excursion, weather permitting. For reservations visit or call 907-683-2290 or email

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About Camp Denali:Since 1952, Camp Denali has been providing guests with active learning experiences and authentic Alaskan hospitality in the heart of Denali National Park. Nineteen tastefully appointed, rusticly elegant guest cabins are privately nestled along a tundra ridgeline, each with a picture-window view of Denali. Daily naturalist-led hikes immerse guests in the wilderness and wildlife of the park’s magnificent sub-arctic landscape, a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve. After three generations of family ownership, Camp Denali remains what its founders envisioned, a place that doesn’t insulate you from the wilderness you came to explore. Residing year-round in the Denali National Park area, the Cole and Hamm family brings a lifetime of experience to running Camp Denali, fostering stewardship of the natural world through a tradition of excellence, community, and place.


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