You wake each morning immersed in nature’s exuberance. The unnaturally long, brilliant days of an Alaskan summer are bursting with life.
Here in the heart of the wilderness, one hundred miles from the end of the road, bears roam glittering sandbars. Moose feast on wild vegetation. Dall sheep tread their ancient mountain paths and eagles soar from cliff to spruce.
Stretching from Canada’s Yukon Territory to the Pacific Ocean, Wrangell-St. Elias national park is part of the largest protected land mass on earth. But most people will never see it.
Although the land surrounding Ultima Thule Lodge is deep in a national park, it is utterly inaccessible and almost entirely unvisited.
There is only one way to get here.
When you come to Alaska, people ask you “Who are you flying with?” And even if you’re a skilled pilot with your own private plane, there’s just one hamlet, deep enough in the mountains, where you can buy enough fuel to reach this hidden valley.
Flying over these peaks, in weather this unpredictable, requires an experienced bush pilot. You want someone who grew up in a cockpit. You want Paul Claus.
There is no itinerary. "Wilderness," says Paul Claus, "is the unexpected. We let nature lead us, so every day is different.
We may fly up into a mountain valley, or put you down on a sandbar at the edge of the forest, and take you on a hike that literally no one has ever done before.”