How to Visit the Kennels

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Open Hours

Summer 2021 Info

From May 15 to September 21, 2021, the kennels will be open to visitors from 10 am to 4 pm daily. Visitors to the Sled Dog Kennels will have the opportunity to walk through the dog yard, home to the park’s canine rangers, talk with rangers about the work sled dogs do to protect park wilderness and learn about mushing through outdoor exhibits. Sled Dog Demonstrations will not occur in 2021.

Learn about what other facilities and services are available or closed during the pandemic.


Located about 3 miles inside the park, the kennels are open year-round to visitors. In winter, the dogs and rangers are frequently in the park rather than at the kennels, so you may wish to inquire at the visitor center before coming to see if the dogs are around.You can reach the kennels any of the following ways:

  • By car: If you have a vehicle, you may drive here. There is a parking lot at Mile 3 on the Denali Park Road—however, there is no RV parking available. Signs indicate that it is the Headquarters area; park anywhere near that sign and the flagpole, and take a short walk (< 200 yards) to the kennels. Please note that parking in summer is very limited, and we encourage you to use the bus system described below.
  • By bus: In summer (May 15—mid-September), you can use a free bus to travel here. The bus will drop you off at the Headquarters parking lot, a short walk from the kennels.
  • On foot: From the Denali Visitor Center, you can hike either the Roadside or Rock Creek Trail to reach the kennels. The hike is mainly uphill from the visitor center to the kennels, ~1.5 miles. You could also ride a bus here in summer, visit the kennels, and then walk (downhill!) back to the visitor center. Please note that there is no food or water for sale here, but we are happy to refill your water bottle from our tap.

Kennels open hours are indicated by the gate at the Kennels entrance. If the gate is open, come on in! If the gate is closed, please do not enter.

Small children are welcome to visit the Kennels during opening hours. Hold their hand or keep them in your arms at all times.

Note on Pets and Service Animals

To keep the Denali sled dogs, your pets and all of our visitors happy and healthy, pets are prohibited from the kennels at all times.During ranger demonstrations in the summer, an unknown pet in the area will trigger a pack response in our kennel that causes all the dogs to lunge, bark and jump in an attempt to scare the unknown animal from their home. This creates a very dangerous environment for the hundreds of people hoping to pet and visit with the Denali NPS sled dogs before and after the program. It would also make it impossible for attendees to hear the ranger and we cannot be able to safely hook up and run a demonstration team for the crowd if outside pets are in the area. Unfortunately, there is nowhere to leave a pet unattended in the Headquarters area, either. During the winter months it is just as dangerous for an outside pet to be brought into the kennels area. Kennels staff may be harnessing dogs or driving teams in and out of the kennels at any time and an unknown pet in the area could cause serious safety hazards for everyone.

If you wish to visit the kennels with a qualified service animal, we ask that you notify the kennels staff in advance, by calling 907-683-9586. Ideally, we can assist you during your visit in a way that lets you leave your service animal in capable hands outside the kennels area while you meet our NPS sled dogs and/or attend the ranger program. We know your service animal is exceptionally well trained, but our dogs do not differentiate their response from any other outside pet, so the same safety concerns apply.

Learn more about visiting Denali with a pet
 

Where Are They Now?


In winter, you can use the map below to follow the progress of the dogs as they mush through the park. On occasion, they may not be using their SPOT device, and the map will be blank. It will also be blank in summer, when the teams are not out in the park.

The map also shows conditions on various trails. Click on a trail segment to see if we have any important additional info to offer for that section.

  • Yellow: Indicates a route our teams have traveled recently (in the past two weeks). Only minor hazards or difficulties should be expected.
  • Orange: Also a route our teams traveled recently, but with more significant hazards or challenges
  • Red: Either a route we have not traveled recently, or a route with extremely difficult hazards or challenges.
  • Download the trail routes: KML trail routes (for use in programs like Google Earth) | GPX trail routes (for use in a GPS device)
    (Note: These files are general routes; there is no current status information associated with them, and the actual trail you find in the park may deviate slightly in course and location).
 

Last updated: September 9, 2021

Contact the Park

Mailing Address:

PO Box 9
Denali Park , AK 99755

Phone:

907 683-9532
A ranger is available 9 am—4 pm daily (except on major holidays). If you get to the voicemail, please leave a message and we'll call you back as soon as we finish with the previous caller.

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