Denali Saddle Safaris

While up in the high mountain air, walking can get tiresome very fast.  And when trying to explore the marshy tundra, walking can become downright sloppy.  Why not get some help from our four legged friends?  Claimjumper and I took a beautiful ride one evening as the sun was setting.  It was like a dream landscape riding along on horseback above tree line.

We took the one hour tour that was arranged for us from the Denali Wilderness Lodge, where they came to pick us up.  However, you can arrange to take a horseback ride even if you are not staying at the lodge.  To find it yourself, head north on the Parks highway from Denali National Park.  Just past Healy turn left on Stampede Road.  Follow the road for almost four miles and the ranch will be on the right.

Denali Saddle Safaris provides rain slickers, helmets and gloves.  The guides are very good with the horses and patient with us new and inexperienced riders.  Tours can be arranged for anywhere from one hour to eight hours with some of the trips including lunch.  Prices vary between trips.  Click here to jump to their listing in our vendors for contact info.

We took our ride during an evening in mid-September.  The sun was setting the whole time we were out.  The red sky blazed as our horses trod through the taiga.  They gave me "Gus" because I did not have any experience with horses.  Gus was really cool, took his time and was gentle and obedient.  Actually, I pretty much just let him follow the horse in front of him.

The tour guides require signatures on releases.  I did not find the release to be overreaching, so we went ahead and signed this one.  It did recommend wearing a helmet which they did provide for those of us who wanted to wear one.  The one hour trip did not seem very dangerous at all, although there was always the danger that the horse could lose its footing on the spongy ground.  Definitely bring a warm hat and gloves if you are going in the evening.  It gets cold very quickly at that altitude.  One group had gotten snowed on during their trip several evenings before ours.

Last Visited: September 2000


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