Iditarod, Anvik, Ruby, Cripple, Nome - the names alone conjure up images of a Jack London adventure novel. For over a thousand miles, the Iditarod trail winds its way from Anchorage to Nome through some of the most rugged, remote, and magnificent country on earth.
Every year, beginning the first Saturday in March, over fifty dog teams race along this trail in what is called the "last great race." Conditions along the trail can vary from surprisingly spring-like weather to interior Alaska temperatures of -30 degrees Fahrenheit with coastal blizzards that bring winds of up to 60 miles an hour.
The trail crosses the austere beauty of the Alaska Range into the remote interior of Alaska, passing through several native villages separated by hundreds of miles of wilderness.
Talkeetna Air Taxi offers the unique adventure of a lifetime in aerial support for the mushers, journalists, film crews, and adventurous tourists "chasing the race" from its start all the way to the finish line in Nome.
TAT offers custom one to ten day trips, tailored to individual schedules. Our Cessna and DeHavilland aircraft are equipped with wheel/skis, personal intercom systems, and a window for everyone. Each day is an adventure as well as a learning and cultural experience. Some nights may even be spent with a native family or in the local school. Accommodations such as those in McGrath at the Takusko House are luxurious, where the food is some of the best found in the State!
Package #1 Yentna River Sunday
Land on the Yentna River where in the summer it carries the most fertile salmon run, and the winter brings a wide frozen river which transforms into a racetrack for the Last Great Race. An afternoon departure allows enough time to fly over the teams and check out all the action on the run before landing on the Yentna River to watch the dog teams race to Nome.
- Depart from Talkeetna for the Yentna River at 3:00 pm
- Return from Yentna between 6:00 and 7:00 pm
- Yentna River Cost: $550 per person
Package #2: A Day at Rainy Pass Checkpoint
The Iditarod Dog Sled Race stops at Rainy Pass Lodge, using the Lodge as one of its main check points. Over 70 teams race more than eleven hundred miles from Anchorage to Nome, Alaska. Rainy Pass Lodge is located on the historic Iditarod Trail 125 miles Northwest of Anchorage in a pristine and dramatic landscape. Visitors enjoy interacting with the dogs and with the mushers as they feed and tend to the needs of their dogs. Or you can just lounge in the main Lodge and watch the dog teams through large picture windows as they charge back to the grueling and infamous race.
- 9-10:00 am depart from Talkeetna for Rainy Pass Lodge
- 5-6:00 pm return from Rainy Pass Lodge to Talkeetna
- Rainy Pass Day Trip Cost: $650 per person (air fare only)
Package #3: Chase The Race Adventure
(We provide pick-up Sunday evening in Anchorage or Wasilla for transportation to Talkeetna)
Monday, Day 1: Explore the lead mushers’ route by air, departing Talkeetna approximately 11:00 am. Stop-overs might include Skwentna and Rainy Pass. Overnight in Talkeetna.
Tuesday, Day 2: We follow the mushers as they cross over the Alaska range and head towards McGrath. Stop-over at the Nikolai checkpoint. Overnight McGrath.
Wednesday, Day 3: Aerial spotting and relaxing in McGrath as mushers pass through. Overnight McGrath.
Thursday, Day 4: Exploring checkpoints Takotna, Ophir, and Iditarod. Overnight McGrath.
Friday, Day 5: Spend the day viewing the mushers along the trail; see checkpoints Anvik, Shageluk, Greyling, and Kaltag. Overnight in the native coastal village of Unalakleet and experience the excitement and anticipation of the locals as they await the lead mushers.
Saturday, Day 6: Watch the mushers glide by in Unalakleet as you relax in the local eateries. Overnight Unalakleet.
Sunday, Day 7: Fly over the coastal villages on the way to Nome. Take in the Arctic scenery and wildlife such as musk ox and seals. View the infamous checkpoint Shaktulik. Overnight in Nome.
Monday, Day 8: Participate in the revelry and experience the culture that is unique to Nome. Overnight Nome.
Tuesday, Day 9: Normally the finish day for the race.
(You must arrange a commercial flight (Alaska Airlines) to return to Anchorage)
- 1 passenger = $11,000
- 2 or more passengers = $7,500 per person
(price includes plane/pilot guide, food & lodging not included)
Recommended Daily Budget for food/lodging - $150 per person (This is a rough estimate and will depend on your individual tastes.)
“We had such a great time - thanks a million… ”The McIntyre Family, Palm Bay, FL.