Since 1934, some kind of visitor facility has existed along Eielson Bluffs. The first facility was a tent camp called Camp Eielson, and named after pioneer Alaskan aviator Carl Ben Eielson. In 1960, after four years of design and construction, an interpretive center and rest stop opened and replaced the tent camp. A major remodel in 2008 ensured the building kept a low profile, tucked partly into the hillside below the park road.
The area has always been famous for its amazing views of Denali on clear days, and it is not uncommon to see wildlife on the surrounding hillsides.
Visiting the Eielson Area: Why and How
Located at Mile 66 on the Park Road, you can reach Eielson Visitor Center with any shuttle bus except the Toklat shuttle, or with the Kantishna Experience tour bus. You will not visit Eielson on a Tundra Wilderness Tour, nor on a Natural History Tour.
Park rangers at Eielson are ready to answer your questions, provide information, or just spend a few minutes chatting as you take a break from the bus. Several ranger programs are offered throughout the day from Eielson.
There is a small gallery of art inspired by Denali's wilderness and wildlife in this visitor center. Meanwhile, the views from Eielson are likely to inspire you, particularly on a clear day, when Denali dominates the view to the southwest.
Three trails exist at Eielson, as shown on the map above. You are also welcome to hike off-trail. Daily ranger-led hikes occur in the area.
Please remember that there is no food service in the park - bring all your food and beverages with you. You can, however, re-fill water bottles at Eielson.
Eielson Area Map
A map of the area around Eielson Visitor Center.