Category Archives: Girdwood, Alaska hostel life

Amy discusses “late night snowy fun” with the NorthernLight


Stay in Girdwood without Emptying out your Wallet
By Damaris Craig

The Girdwood, Alaska Backpackers Inn opened last July and is ready for the snowy season and is providing skiiers and snowboarders without completely draining wallets.

The Backpackers Inn is a hostel style inn with some great rates for students. It isn’t located right by the Alyeska Resort but is just a short walking distance from the Tesoro gas station. Backpackers Inn is about a four-minute walk away from Tesoro, from the gas station you can take the Alyeska shuttle for just $1 and it will bring you right to the slopes.

“The shuttle runs until 2 a.m. on the weekends so you can get plenty of late night snowy fun in and not have to worry about missing the shuttle,” says Amy Johnson, co-manager for the inn.

The hostel is a great place to meet some new people also. If you want to go the cheapest route then the dorm style room is just for you. There is one female and one male dorm style room. The female dorm room has eight bunk beds in it, while the male dorm room has ten bunk beds in it. The cost to stay in a dorm room is only $25 a night. “Dorm style rooms are a great place to meet people who enjoy hitting the slopes too,” Johnson said.

Backpackers Inn also accommodates people who are not comfortable sharing a room with people they do not know. There are seven private rooms that have a double bed and an upper bunk. Up to three people are allowed to stay in a private room. The costs for private rooms are $50 a night for one person, $60 for two people, or $70 for three people.

The check-in time for the inn is between 5 and 9 p.m. They also offer free Wi-Fi available for all of the guests.

They even accommodate large groups by offering great group rates.

If you are interested in more information, or would like to make a reservation call the Girdwood, Alaska Backpackers Inn at 727-4678

Keep up on the University of Alaska Anchorage student news at The Northern Light

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Girdwood Alaska Backpackers Inn says, “NO to Smoking.”

physician smoking Lucky Strikes

Chesterfield-christmas-Reagan

Please don’t use the excuse that physicians say, “It’s Toasted”

Ronald Reagan slipped your grandma the big Chesterfield

and that George W. Bush encourages children

in 3rd world countries

to enjoy “Made in the USA.”

At GABI “JUST SAY NO” to smoking.

Even Nancy sometimes says, "Oh YES."

Even Nancy sometimes says, "Oh YES to Pleasure"

At GABI we understand that “YES” is sometimes more fun then “NO.” We ask that all questionable activities be enjoyed on the public property adjacent to the hostel.

Les Deux Voyageurs visit Girdwood Alaska Backpackers Inn

Les Deux Voyageurs in Alaska
July 25, 2009 Couch Surfing

We’re a Canadian+French photographer/writer couple who just moved to NYC after some years in Paris and we’re now in Alaska for 10 days!………..

July 28th, 2009 Couch Surfing

Ok, no one called or ‘texted’ us on our cell phone to offer a CS couch (or rug,cabin,garden space) for one night 😦

Hey you Alaskans, We’re still interested!
We’ll be in Fairbanks tonight (anyone here has a couch??).
Then, we’ll be riding towards the Denali for a few days, then to Anchorage (anyone around that road with a spare couch and wishing to share stories)…

Dear Alaskans, we’d love to meet some of you so text us on our cell and let’s meet!

Tanguy and Violette.

Couch Surfing and bartering are always a great way to meet people on the road or in your own community. Through our travels, Amy and I have met wonderful people through social networking sites like Couch Surfing, Warm Showers, WWOOF, Grow Food, and Help X . Check out Earthworm Envy to read stories, poetry, and watch videos about traveling via social networking sites. As far as bartering, my right leg bears a colorful example of bartering. Josh Petty worked on the tattoo “The Man on the Moon is Dead Impaled by Old Glory” in exchange for some Mental Foreplay for the Classics poetry and a Veronica and the Mental Foreplays CD.

Managing a hostel offers a unique opportunity to barter. We experienced this first hand when we stayed at the Bridge Street Inn in Cambria, California. There we made a video of lid sinks in exchange for room and board. Click here to watch the video. Now it’s our turn to give back to travelers and artists the opportunities that people have given us.

Knowing that we have only once couch, with very little floor space to make up a second bed, we contacted Tanguy to see if he would be interested in taking some photographs in exchange for a private room at GABI. Tanguy and Violette accepted our invitation. The art of story telling is not dead with Tanguy and Violette. Tanguy uses his whole body to tell a well-crafted story, my favorite of which is about the family sailboat that almost sunk in the Mediterranean.

We worked on the photo shoot, sat on the deck, hula hooped, and enjoyed an omelet in Whittier.

Thank you, Tanguy and Violette, for making the hostel that much more of a beautiful place.

Check out, Canadian+French photographer/writer couple’s work at these two sites:

Les Deux Voyageurs

Les Deux Voyageurs a New York

Girdwood Alaska Backpackers Inn by Tanguy Gilson

photo of Brandon Follett and Amy Johnson by Tanguy Gilson

Tanguy Gilson taking photos at Girdwood Alaska Backpackers Inn

Tanguy GIlson enjoying the Girdwood Alaska Backpackers Inn

omelet in Whittier with Tanguy GIlson and Amy Johnson

Picnic Puzzle Party at Girdwood Alaska Backpackers Inn

jigsaw puzzles and board games need a table like a video game that needs electricity

jigsaw puzzles and board games need a table like a video game that needs electricity


The large hamburger jigsaw puzzle and board games have been sitting on top of GABI’s bookcase since mid July. The managers and guests have been staring at the fun on the shelf for some time. The other day a guest said, “To have games but not a table is like being given a dog collar and leash but not a dog.” That was the tipping point. I was instantly mentally thrown back to some young adult gift giving trauma.

Dec 25, 2003 Boise, Idaho
Christmas morning, Amy and I were given gift certificates to use at a dog grooming facility.
In front of the family and the baby jesus idol, I yell, “Mom, you know we don’t have a dog.”
She replied, “But you have a dog leash and collar.”
“You gave us the dog leash and collar! Get us a dachshund half husky for Christmas. Don’t you think it would be great to have a dog to go with the gifts?”
“It comes down to time and money plus that sounds like an ugly dog. I have worked too hard pet shopping just to have you put that beautiful collar on a half breed mutt. By the way, in your stocking I got you dog toenail clippers.”
Now Mother only acknowledges me through e-cards. On Christmas she will send an e-card from Dog Breedz.com.

Merry Christmas Son

Merry Christmas Son and Amy

After I composed myself from the sudden stir of memories the picnic table was moved inside. To celebrate the new addition to the common room, we hosted a Picnic Puzzle Party.

The first guests to arrive were Matt and Parker. Not only did Matt bring his puzzle enthusiasm, he brought good news about the website that his company OTC has been working on. The hostel website now links directly to the blog and booking sites (thanks, Tanguy Gilson, for the suggestion). HOLY MOLY now we have two things to celebrate!!!

Rachel and Michael, our new neighbors who just moved to Girdwood, rounded out the group. Rachel baked “the best yet” chocolate chip cookies, and Michael connected puzzle pieces with celebratory dances.

Parker and Michael enjoying the hamburger puzzle

Parker and Michael enjoying the hamburger puzzle

chocolate chip cookies are delicious with a puzzle

chocolate chip cookies are delicious with a puzzle

Matt takes a break from the puzzle

Matt takes a break from the puzzle

hamburgers puzzles go with good food like wine is to cheese

hamburgers puzzles go with good food like wine is to cheese


Matt, Amy, Michael, and Rachel work up an appetite while sitting in front of the puzzle

Matt, Amy, Michael, and Rachel work up an appetite while sitting in front of the puzzle

OTC web design Matthew Bailey creative director

October in Girdwood, Alaska: Beaver Pond Trail

The woman slams down her glass of water on the new circular table in the common room. “Did I hear you say ‘let’s drive into Girdwood?’ Who do you take me for? Do I look like an invalid who can’t walk the two miles into town for coffee?”

The hostel common room goes silent. Everyone stares at the man with the Corvette keychain in hand.

The hostel manager quickly interrupts, “You know, Mr. Driver here probably didn’t know about the Beaver Pond Trail before making such a silly comment. Sit down, let me show you a photo journal of my favorite route into Girdwood for a cup of coffee.”

Pick up bicycle/walking path by Tesoro Gas Station

Pick up bicycle/walking path by Tesoro Gas Station

A corvette drives towards us on the Bird Point path

A corvette drives towards us on the Bird Point path

Chugach State Park one of Alaska's most beautiful attractions

Chugach State Park one of Alaska's most beautiful attractions

View from the Bird Point path

View from the Bird Point path

There goes Ace, Girdwood Alaska Backpackers Inn guest

There goes Ace, Girdwood Alaska Backpackers Inn guest

On this trip we didn't see any beavers

On this trip we didn't see any beavers

Looks like the bears missed this early October blueberry

Looks like the bears missed this early October blueberry

Dogs can easily negotiate the Beaver Pond Trail

Dogs can easily negotiate the Beaver Pond Trail

The Beaver Pond Trail will take you to the Crow Creek Road

The Beaver Pond Trail will take you to the Crow Creek Road

Across from Maxine's Bistro there's a short cut into the main part of Girdwood

Across from Maxine's Bistro there's a short cut into the main part of Girdwood

The exciting adventure ends with a delicious cup of coffee

The exciting adventure ends with a delicious cup of coffee

A Review of Girdwood Alaska Backpackers Inn

Ted and Kathy Elmer hiking in Alaska

Ted and Kathy Elmer hiking in Alaska

Ted and I want to thank you for such a great stay in your Hostel. (The two old farts from Seattle) It truly is the best place we stayed in our three weeks of Alaska. We were so comfortable with you and your guests and the way you run the Hostel. We were very lucky that Carol and Bud offered up your services.

We will tell everyone coming your way to stay in your hostel, and make the 45 minute drive to Anchorage only to fly out! We were so sorry we did not just go to the Turnagain Arm, watch the Bore Tide and return to Girdwood.

We did have a treat on the way to back to Anchorage, we got to observe a Bear playing in the mud flats on Turnagan Arm. We went to take pictures by Bird Point. Where the bicycle tunnel comes through, there is a path that leads to one of the points out in the bay. At some point it was a marked trail. It is a short hike about 30 minutes and well worth exploring.

Our best to you an your adventures and your stay in Alaska. You give us hope for the next generation, with your common sense and your kindness.

brown bears on the mudflats of Turnagain Arm near Girdwood, Alaska

brown bears on the mudflats of Turnagain Arm near Girdwood, Alaska (photo by Judith Britt)

Adventure Guide and Author Gary Wu visits Girdwood Alaska Backpackers Inn

Gary Wu Rockies Girdwood Alaska Backpackers Inn

Adventure guide and author, Gary Wu, spent several nights at GABI in September. We are honored that Gary chose to not only mention GABI but dedicate an entire post to the hostel on his MBT blog.

Although we don’t understand the text in Environmentally Friendly Hostel – GABI, we love the pictures!

Check out Gary Wu’s other work:

Facebook

Photography

Book

MBT Adventure Ltd.

Gary posing for the future, "After Dinner Brush and Floss Party"

Gary posing for GABI's upcoming "After Dinner Brush and Floss Party"