Talkeetna is the staging point for expeditions bound for Mt. McKinley. Local pilots transport climbers and gear to her foot from Talkeenta's airstrip. On clear days, around this small town there are plenty of places to catch a glimpse of the Alaska Range and 'the big mountain.'
With a population of 360, Talkeetna's downtown is quite manageable. Most traffic through the area is in someway associated with Mt. McKinley. When the weather is good, small planes take off with astonishing regularity winging over Denali National Park and back for flightseeing in summer and shuttling climbers to the McKinley's base late spring.
A number of hikes or trails accessible by bike make it easy to get out of town. If you want to give your legs a break, try taking an off-road jeep adventure based in nearby Trapper Creek—you drive, they supply the guide.
With fall come the Northern Lights and snow—enjoy skiing, dog sledding and snowmobiling during the winter months. Talkeetna is notoriously short of female citizens so for a real Alaska party, ladies, take in the Wilderness Woman Contest or Bachelor Society Ball in December.
Rafting tours run the Talkeetna or Chulitna Rivers. Fishing on the river isn't bad, though a few insider tips are always handy. Book a guide or a drop-off along the river in Talkeetna.
Talkeetna is just over 115 road miles north of Anchorage and 250 miles south of Fairbanks.