Places to visit in Alaska
Nenana River
4.5
About
Recreational river that flows through Denali National Park.
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4.5
4.5 of 5 bubbles12 reviews
Excellent
8
Very good
1
Average
2
Poor
0
Terrible
1

Plattonian
Fort Worth, TX663 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2021 • Family
How can some of you leave less than 5 stars to a river? It's a river!

We first encountered the Nenana River in Fairbanks while taking the Riverboat Discovery Tour. Then, we saw the river on our drive south to Denali. We were delighted to find out our hotel room (Denali Park Village) had a view of the Nenana River. Our room was so close to the river that we could hear it.
Written 19 July 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

differentname
Woodbridge, CT2,597 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2019
This is not a biggie, but it is part of the Alaskan experience.

Originating from the Nenana Glacier, parallelling a section of the Denali Highway, then flowing north, parallelling the Parks Highway, roughly between Cantwell to Nenana, you get closeup views at the bridge crossings on the Parks Highway.

I did not even photograph it, as it was not as spectacular as my other Alaska views, but that does not mean that will be your experience.
Written 6 September 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Rhys J
Llanbedr, UK2,933 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2016 • Couples
My wife and I followed the Nenana River on our train journey between Fairbanks and Denali during our escorted ‘Natural Wonders of Alaska’ tour with Titan Travel. This glacial river, approximately 140 miles (230 km) long, is a tributary of the Tanana River in central Alaska. Our journey on the Wilderness Express followed the upper reaches of the river along the northern route of the Alaska Railroad connecting Fairbanks and Anchorage.

The 360 degree views of the Nenana River and in particular the Gorge from the curved glass dome carriage of the Wilderness Express were spectacular. The outside open-air viewing platform at the back of the carriage was also a great spot to take wonderful photographs and avoid the glare from the glass of the domed section of the carriage. It’s a very fast flowing river especially in the Gorge with numerous rapids making it a treacherous section of the river suitable for very experienced whitewater rafting enthusiasts. The river however also offers Class I (easy) sections for beginners to rafting and it’s very popular with all kinds of watersports. Some from our tour group opted for an optional water rafting excursion and had an exhilirating ride along a section of the river. I missed that excursion because I wanted to undertake another optional excursion arranged at the same time. I opted to visit and land on the Yanert Glacier with Era Helicopters, an incredible excursion and well worth the expense.

I also enjoyed stunning views of the Nenana River during our 2 nights stay at the Grande Denali Lodge Hotel near Denali National Park with the river serving as the Park’s eastern boundary. The hotel is located on the side of Sugarloaf Mountain and has commanding views of the river and valley below. I had some of the best views of the river however during the optional excursion with Era Helicopters into the high mountains of the Alaskan Range to view and land on the Yanert Glacier. Our flight path gave amazing views of the river and valley and my camera went into overdrive taking so many pictures! I was very fortunate to be allocated a window seat on the flight to make the most of the photo. opportunites and was even more fortunate to be on the excursion on a sunny and clear day. This river is beautiful, wonderful and full of life - it's well worth visiting and has so much to offer.
Written 14 September 2016
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Ginteralaska
Juneau, AK39 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Oct 2015
We visited the Nenana River in the fall before the ice had settled in. Lots of beautiful fall colors around.
Written 10 October 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Jeff A
Longwood12 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2015 • Couples
I'm 63 and had never rafted before, but my wife talked me into the 4 hour, 23 mile Nenana River excursion by Denali Outdoors. Our guide, Chad, was friendly and very knowledgeable about the area and the river. We hit Denali in mid July, and it was unusually warm and dry. Nevertheless, I stuck chemical heat packs on the arms and legs of my thermal underwear, as well as between two layers of socks. I had never put on a dry suit, which was an experience by itself! The staff were patient and helpful and extremely well organized. Chad gave us explicit safety and paddling instructions and off we went. Quiet, serene and magnificent views were everywhere for the first 2 hours. As far as the final 2 hours, all I can tell you is that it was the ride of my life. In between rapids we were able to swim (float) next to the raft. Sure, the water is cold at 38 degrees, but for me it was the highlight of the entire trip. How many people can say they have rafted a glacial river! P.S.: The only parts of me that got wet were my head and hands
Written 27 July 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Jane N
London, UK970 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2014 • Friends
There were two trips 1&2 or 3&4 whitewater. We did the former having never done this before and we loved it. We just sat and enjoyed the beautiful scenery, got thoroughly wet and had a great laugh while someone else was doing all the paddling!
If you want to take photos then you must take a waterproof camera as there is no where to put an ordinary camera to keep it dry when you have the wetsuits on. Take a spare pair of socks to change into as your feet may get wet (the rest of me stayed completely dry under the wetsuit).
We did the trip at 6pm which was perfect as there isn't much to do in the evening (apart from eat and drink!).
The lovely girl paddling was very knowledgeable about the area and was fully qualified in whitewater rafting. She also had a fantastic sense of humour. We were cold when we got off but after a hot coffee back at the lodge we were fine.
Written 17 August 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

PalmtreeMonkey
Tulsa, OK70 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2013
Pleasant but not worth the -11/2 drive to it. Had just got off very
Long bus ride and then had to take another back to get the boat ride
Written 14 September 2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

PalmtreeMonkey
Tulsa, OK70 contributions
1.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2013 • Couples
The tour was through Princess Cruise line entitled Scenic Wilderness Run. $218 and was not worth it At All. We left hotel at 7 am in the. Cold and rain, Aug 28,2013. Putting on wet suit was painful, wading out to raft was freezing and the float trip of 11 miles was the most miserable time of my life. Not rough but freezing cold!! Trip should have been cancelled.
Written 13 September 2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

petoq
Vinalhaven, ME43 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2013 • Couples
I had a river rafting experience today with Denali Outdoor Center. We went on the Nenana River.

It was wonderful! The gear was first rate (their dry suits cost $900) and, except for my hands and face, never got wet. Yes, the water is 38 degrees, but one warms up paddling (there are two tours, one where you just hold on and another where everyone paddles- the padders had a lot more fun). The guide was experienced, and both safety-aware and funny. The guides must really work on the jokes and timing- they were hilarious. The scenery is amazing- some of the oldest rocks in the country (maybe in the world), cliffs, the Alaska Railroad line, canyons, wilderness. There are about five or six rapids and then calm (but fast) water.
I'd say it was one of the highlights of my trip to Denali Park. There are no stops for 2+ hours, so take a bathroom break just before setting out.
Written 1 August 2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

TripMax55
TripMax5533 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Sept 2011
Would Go Again. and next time would wear extra layers especially socks, feet got too cold. The vistas and landscape are magnificent! Guides were fun...
Written 28 November 2011
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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Nenana River (Alaska) - All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go (with Photos) - Tripadvisor