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USA: Alaska, Talkeetna - Flight to Kahiltna
If you ever get to Alaska, this trip is definitely worth taking. The town
of Talkeetna, about 118 miles North of Anchorage, serves as the jumping off
point for most climbers attempting to scale North America's highest peak, Mt.
McKinley. Most climbers fly out the Kahiltna glacier from Talkeetna to begin
their summit attempts. Tourists can also fly out to see the mountain up close
and if the weather cooperates you may be able to land on the glacier and mingle
Two companies operate flights to the mountain from Talkeetna, K2 aviation
and Doug Geeting Aviation. We flew out with Doug Geeting himself, who is
fixture in Alaska and one of the world's best mountain pilots. The planes are
Cessna 185's, some turbo-charged, and each holds up to 5 passengers (depending
on size and weight of the passengers). They are not pressurized and things can
get a bit chilly during the 75 minute flight each way. You will also have to
wear a headset to hear and speak to the pilot. The view during the trip is
spectacular as you start out flying out over the rivers and marshes full of
moose, bear, and other animals. The mountain range rises sharply from the
plains and you fly through a space between mountains called "One Shot Gap"
to get to the glacier. Both the landing and take off can be a bit bumpy but
they are guaranteed to be exciting. This trip is not recommended for young
children or people that have problems getting around.
Flights range from $100 to $155 per person but can be lower
if you have a group (the key here is hang around with small people so you can
fit more on the plane). Geeting aviation also offers other flights and tours.
Call for details. Amex, MasterCard, Visa accepted.
Doug Geeting Aviation, PO Box 42, Talkeetna, Alaska 99676.
Telephone: 907.733.2366, 800.770.2366. Fax: 907.733.1000.
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