About

Our Story

Wild Alaska Travel developed into a thriving business based on owner, Laurent Dick’s, deep love of wild places and his passion for sharing the grandeur of the landscape and its people with select visitors.

Laurent offers to his guests more than 25 years of firsthand experience as professional photographer, published author and wilderness guide throughout Alaska, from guiding sea kayaking trips in Prince William Sound, to leading mountaineering expeditions to the summit of Denali (Mount McKinley), to guiding polar bear expeditions along Alaska’s Arctic Coast.

Wild Alaska Travel evolved out of a very personal involvement with the Alaska tourism industry. “I worked as a wilderness guide for a number of small tour operators (learned many good lessons) as well as a public speaker for a large tourism corporation, speaking to large cruise ship audiences about my mountaineering ascents on Denali (Mount McKinley).

During these years as public speaker, I met many visitors to Alaska who were yearning for a deeper personal connection with the land and its people, away from the beaten mass tourism paths. The visitors I met also expressed a real desire to experience the magic of winter in Alaska, with its iconic northern lights displays and see the huskies they met during the summer in action on the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race, Alaska’s #1 winter event.

From these conversations grew my desire to create authentic, experiential tours where you can

  • Experience the real Alaska they always dreamt about
  • Be fellow traveler and not just a tourist
  • Go places where most others tours don’t go
  • Travel in a small group (we never take more than ten people, often just five or six)

So in 2011, I founded Wild Alaska Travel. Since then, I have refined our tour offerings and emerged as a leader in Alaska small group travel, providing once in a lifetime experiences to guests from around the world.

– Laurent Dick, Juneau, Alaska –

 

Laurent Dick – Owner & Lead Guide

Laurent Dick--- Wild Alaska TravelI grew up in Switzerland with a camera in one hand and an ice axe in the other. I’ve lived in Alaska for the last 25 years and I’ve found my home. I’ve spent those years guiding, exploring, taking pictures of beauty sweeping toward the far horizon and introducing people to an Alaska they won’t experience with anyone else.

My work experience as a wilderness and mountain guide spans the entire state, from the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to Prince William Sound to Denali (Mount McKinley). I am the author of three photo books (Climb Denali, Yukon Quest, and Antarctica) and co-author of two photo books. As a public speaker, I have spoken at corporate events and my multimedia productions have been seen by thousands of visitors to Alaska. I am also leading a yacht-based photo expedition to Antarctica every year.

I live in Juneau, Alaska’s state capital, with my wife, Greta, and son, Florian, 10. I am fluent in English, French, German and Swiss-German.

You’ll meet some extraordinary people on my tours and will get an idea of how life can be lived up here. I’ll show you the beauty I’ve found here, and if you want some tips on photography along the way, I love to help.

My life has been full of adventure, and you don’t get to have this many years of adventure without balancing it with real care. You will travel with me in safety and confidence. I’m looking forward to meeting you.

“What I most appreciated of your guiding was how you let each of us “discover” the Iditarod in our own way, but without any of the usual burdens of researching and planning. You provided that perfect blend of freedom and support for each member of the group. From your website, I knew that we would be traveling with a world-class photo journalist. I now know that you are a world-class guide, too. We were so fortunate to have found you!” – Susan Yamada, Hawaii –

 

Jason Matthews – Lead Guide

Jason Matthews Lea Guide Wild Alaska TravelJason began his career working in wild places, as a guide in Glacier National Park in the 1990’s.

Now over 20 years later he has worked as a naturalist, environmental educator, cameraman, guide and wildlife researcher in parks throughout the Rocky Mountains and Alaska.

With a focus on wolves and bears Jason has worked on several National Geographic assignments over the years. His work has appeared on the National Geographic Channel and Nat Geo Wild. Most recently with a National Geographic project searching for Grizzly/ Polar Bear hybrids in Arctic Alaska.

Jason currently divides his time between Montana and Alaska working in Glacier, Denali, Yellowstone and the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. He lives with his wife, two sons and 70 sled dogs in Montana.

“Jason was a fantastic guide and went out of his way to make sure we had an unique experience by taking us for a short hike in the Gates of the Arctic national park, seeing the northern lights, and visiting Sebastian Schnuelle’s home and meeting Libby Riddles there and cooking us great meals and going out of his way to make I had great vegan things to eat , too!” – Lia LaPiana, Alexandira, Virginia (2014 Alaska Polar Bear & Northern Lights Tour)

 

Nan Eagleson – Lead Guide

Nan Eagleson - Lead Guide - Wild Alaska TravelNan Eagleson has lived and worked in the arctic and subarctic of Alaska and Canada for more than 30 years. Nan’s passion for wildlife and wild places started many years ago, when she graduated with a degree in Wildlife Biology from Colorado State University. She have been residing year round for over 20 years on the edge of Denali National Park with her family, which includes a team of sled dogs. She loves to dog mush in the winter he has worked in association with Jeff King’s Husky Homestead operation for many years, logging hundreds of miles on the trail with his Iditarod dogs. She also has more than a decade experience as chief naturalist at the Denali Education Center. Nan is a world-class naturalist and a conservationist at heart with a remarkable breadth of knowledge and unbounded enthusiasm for wildlife and wild places.

“This trip was soo far beyond our best expectations!..and Nan was absolutely a gem- it is not often one gets to meet such a genuinely kind , sweet and exuberant soul. It really made the trip way over the top!” – Tim Freeman, Cincinnati, Ohio (2013 Iditarod Finish & Northern Lights Tour)

 


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