Wild Latitudes


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Birding and Wildlife

Interested in this tour?

Explore America’s wild, frontier state on a journey from the majestic fjords of Glacier Bay to the tundra-clad slopes of North America’s highest mountain: Denali. Traveling in a small group by van and boat, we’ll experience the awe-inspiring landscapes of Alaska and have great opportunities to see its amazing wildlife.

We’ll survey the birds and mammals found in this northern region, many of which are rarely seen at lower latitudes. Among the rainforests and glaciers of Alaska’s southeast, we’ll look for species such as Varied Thrush, Kittlitz’s and Marbled Murrelet, Tufted and Horned Puffin, and Black-legged Kittiwake. Mammals we’re likely to see in the southeast include Sea Otters, Orca, Humpback Whales, and Steller Sea Lions. Different species await us in the interior country around Denali. There we’ll look for Arctic Warbler, Gray-cheeked Thrush, Northern Hawk Owl, and Willow Ptarmigan. Large mammals such as Moose, Caribou, Canada Lynx, and Grizzly abound in this area.

You’ll get a thorough education on the region’s ecology on this tour. Our focus will be on birds and wildlife, but along the way we’ll also learn about Alaska’s plant life, geology, and climate—all in a fun, friendly atmosphere.

Tour Highlights

 Seeing the birds and wildlife of two incredible national parks: Glacier Bay and Denali.

 Watching massive glaciers spill into the ocean.

 An intimate boat ride among seabirds and whales in remote reaches of Glacier Bay.

 Potential for viewing grizzly bears and other charismatic megafauna such as moose and caribou.

 Walks through alpine tundra, temperate rainforests, and boreal forests.


Itinerary at a Glance

Days 1 and 2

Arrive and meet group in Juneau. Introductions and orientation. The next morning, we'll take a ferry ride from Juneau to Gustavus, near the mouth of Glacier Bay. This journey will be a nice introduction to Southeast Alaksa. We'll look for seabirds along the way. Once in Gustavus, we'll explore some local birding hotspots.

Day 3

An exciting, full day in Glacier Bay National Park on our own chartered boat! We'll be exploring the beautiful bay to view seabirds, marine mammals, and tidewater glaciers.

Day 4

Today we fly from Gustavus to Anchorage, via Juneau. In the late afternoon, we'll do some birding around Anchorage.

Days 5 and 6

We'll shift into a land-based mode when we drive in vans from Anchorage to Denali National Park. We'll have a full day to Explore Denali National Park, looking for birds and big mammals across the majestic landscapes of the park.

Days 7 and 8

On these last couple days of our adventure, we'll be driving the world-famous Denali Highway, east from the national park. The focus will be on birding in this remote area. And there will be more opportunities to see exciting wildlife. We'll complete our grand journey in Fairbanks, where we'll catch our flights home.


Contact us to get on wait list

COST: $3,095


START DATE: May 27, 2018

DURATION: 8 days

GROUP SIZE: 10 people

TRIP FOCUS: Birding and wildlife watching


  • Guiding services
  • Double-occupancy lodging
  • Ground and water transportation
  • All meals
  • Excursions and park fees


Ivan Phillipsen, Co-owner of Wild Latitudes, is a passionate naturalist with a background in scientific research. He holds an M.S. in biology and a Ph.D. in zoology. Natural history is Ivan’s true passion and what he is most excited to teach to others. Although he is fascinated by just about every aspect of nature, Ivan is particularly fond of birds, reptiles, amphibians, insects, plants, and geology. Everything is interconnected in nature and Ivan takes a holistic approach when teaching about the natural world.

Emily Mount has worked at ten National Parks across the western U.S. As a naturalist, she shared her love of wild places with visitors at the Grand Canyon, Sequoia, Hawaii Volcanoes, Organ Pipe Cactus and Haleakala. She has also worked in the backcountry as an EMT and wilderness ranger patrolling Big Bend, Zion and Yosemite. In 2008 Emily arrived at Glacier Bay National Park in southeast Alaska. Through five seasons of work as an Alaska ranger naturalist, Emily fell in love with southeast’s vibrant ecosystem, dynamic landscape and thriving coastal communities.

If you love nature travel, you’re in good hands with us

How We Travel

We gauge the success of a tour on how well it was enjoyed by all. Providing a rich, rewarding experience for each individual is our top priority. Our tours generally have an easy pace so that everyone gets to experience all a region has to offer.

We create a friendly, non-competitive atmosphere that encourages tour participants to help each other in the field. Just as safety and comfort are cornerstones of our tours, so are humor and the simple joy of learning. The good cheer and camaraderie on our tours often inspire post-trip get-togethers and new, life-long friendships.

Our Focus

We’re crazy about birds, but they are only part of the story.

Our tours offer a holistic experience by taking the time to appreciate all of the animals we encounter– including mammals, reptiles, amphibians, fish, and insects. They all interact and play vital roles in their ecosystems. We also take time on our tours to explore the plants and geology of the regions we visit.

Fostering a deeper understanding of new cultures is one of our goals. On your tour, you’ll taste exotic cuisine and hear local music. You’ll have time to peruse the market, stroll through villages, and share stories with the people you meet.

Protecting the Wild

Ecotourism is a powerful tool for protecting the wild regions of the world. For example, parts of Uganda are now devoted to the conservation of the Mountain Gorilla. Though still endangered, ecotourism has pulled this species back from the precipice of extinction.

We aim to make a positive conservation impact wherever we travel. We often use local guides and stay in small, locally-owned lodges. On every trip, we donate to a local conservation organization that works to protect a native species or ecosystem. When you travel with Wild Latitudes you are helping to protect wild places and the amazing species that call them home.

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