Price includes all travel costs from departure Fairbanks to return Fairbanks at end of trip. All flights to Bettles and backcountry included! Lodging in Bettles included.
Remoteness and solitude does not have to mean extreme difficulty. This trek is ideal for those wanting to experience northern Alaska's Brooks range in the Gates of the Arctic N.P. but keep the hiking within a more moderate range.
The Easter Creek valley receives very little visitation so solitude as all but certain. Actually we may have to share the trail... with some caribou. The area is littered with shed caribou antlers and we are very likely to spot quite a few in our travels.
We hike the ridge-lines of the region for amazing views of this wide-open country camping by the many lakes and streams.
We land one of the numerous small lakes and make our way to another lake for a pickup in a float plane. The route in-between is ours to choose and we have a lot of felxibility to make our way as we go.
You will want to be in shape for backpacking but this is not an overly strenuous trek. If you are looking for a very challenging Brooks Range trek then check out the Arrigetch Peaks trip.
Most years we offer this trek only once per season so book your spot early!
|Day 0||Arrive by mid-afternoon in Fairbanks and get checked into your hotel (not included). Once the group is assembled you will meet with your guide who will review gear and logistics for the next few days.|
|Day 1||After a breakfast to get us going we head to the airport for an amazing flight to Bettles. This small mountain community is a gateway to the Gates of the Arctic National Park and jumping off point for adventures into the Brooks Range. But we don't stay here long as we soon hop onto a smaller bush plane equipped with floats. Our pilot drops us off at a remote backcountry lake where we spend our first night in the wild. Depending on what time we land, we may do a bit of hiking around the lake area.|
|Day 2-5||Your guide whips up a great breakfast to power us on our way. What we do over the next several days depends a lot on what the group is up for. For example we may spend the first day exploring the area around the lake where we got dropped off. Or we may shoulder packs and strike out for the territories. It all depends on weather and the interests of the group. But the point is that we have some flexibility to make up the itinerary as we go.|
|Day 6||One last backcountry breakfast and then we pack it up for the flight back to Bettles. We could jump on a plane in Bettles and be in Fairbanks that night... but where's the fun in that? Instead we spend a night at the Bettles Lodge and decompress from our adventure before returning to the city.|
|Day 7||Time to bid farewell to the Brooks as we catch a flight back to Fairbanks.|
How Do We Get to The Gates of the Arctic?
Because the logistics are a bit more innolved with such a remote location, we take care of that for you. Our trips in the Gates of the Arctic National Park begin in Fairbanks Alaska. Once you get to Fairbanks we take care of the rest. Included in trip costs are the flight from Fairbanks to Bettles as well as the connecting bush flight in a smaller float plane which takes us deep into the Brooks Range.
Where Do We Meet?
You'll meet your hiking guide and the rest of the group in Fairbanks for an orientation meeting around 5:00 p.m. the evening before the trip begins. This is the day listed as Day 0 on the itinerary. You will be in contacted about a month before your trip and we will specify the exact location of the orientation meeting at that point. The next morning we take a van for the short ride to the airport for our flight into Bettles. In Bettles we transfer to a bush float plane for the flight into the deep backcountry of Gates of the Arctic National Park.
Our pickups on the last day are usualy around mid-day to allow us time to get back to Bettles, get cleaned up and relax before dinner. The next morning we take a morning flight into Fairbanks allowing time for afternoon connecting flights.
Your safety is our top priority. Our treks are led by professional hiking guides, all of whom are certified wilderness first responders, each with years of wilderness experience. On most treks the guide carries a satellite phone. If you have any further questions about safety, please contact us at 907.554.1088 for more information.
Your tour will be led by a trained, experienced professional with a solid guiding background, years of personal wilderness and hiking experience, medical certifications, and a passion for leading people into breathtaking landscapes. Check out our Meet Our Team page for staff bios.
We prefer to run small groups and our clients like it that way too. The standard group size on our Brooks Range backpacking trips is 5 guests and 1 guide. Larger groups are possible for private trips. If you have more questions about group size, please give us a call at 907.554.1088 and we'll answer all your questions.
Weather in the Brooks Range and Gates of the Arctic
Alaska is pretty far north and like any mountain evirronment we are prone to sudden temperature and weather shifts. To be fully prepared, please follow the recommended clothing list closely (this list comes as part of your trip packet when you register). See below for average summer temperatures in Gates of the Arctic. July is especialy variable and we have had temps hit the low 80s some summers. Mid August is when things start to cool down a bit but still great hiking weather.
Average Temperatures (Fahrenheit)
As measured at the Anaktuvuk Pass weather station (elevation 770 metres (2,530 ft)), the average summer temperatures are 3 °C (37 °F) as a low and 16 °C (61 °F) as a high. During the winter the average low is −30 °C (−22 °F) while the average high is −22 °C (−8 °F).
What's Not Included
: See the Gear List for detailed information on what clothes and gear to bring on your trek.
Meals: What To Expect
All of our hiking and backpacking tours include a diversity of tasty meals packed full of critical carbohydrates, proteins and fats. We carry foods that travel well in the backcountry – rice, pastas, lentils, beans, packaged meats, nuts, breads, oatmeal, granola, and more.
For optimal taste and energy, we supplement all our meals with spices, herbs, oils, cheeses, butter, sugar, and fruits and vegetables. In addition, we provide you with with an assortment of trail mix, snacks, and dried fruits to eat at your own discretion.
We regularly accommodate vegan, vegetarian and non-gluten diets and will make adjustments for food allergies. These and other special dietary requests may require an additional fee.