Home | Contact Us | Map & Directions | Resource Links

Setting | Lodge & Facilities | Programs | Booking info | Gallery
Facilities and hosts at Dechenla wilderness resort

Our main lodge is a cozy, 2-story log building. The dining area and kitchen are on the main floor. The second floor is a library and sitting room, with windows on three sides to showcase the views and allow for wildlife viewing. We have a music system and we can provide electric generation to show slides and PowerPoints, as well as recharge batteries and other devices. (We can accomodate meeting facilitation.)

We have eight guest cabins, each with 2 beds, wood burning heater, desk, washbasin, and disposable toilet. Each cabin is situated to ensure guests’ privacy, while at the same time offering a unique view of the mountains. We provide bedding, towels and hot and cold water.

We also have a shower/sauna house with an on-demand propane-fired shower system, and wood-fired sauna. Saunas are offered twice a week, showers are offered at your convenience.

We serve delicious, home-cooked meals complete with home-made breads and pastries. We offer alternative menus on request for those with special dietary needs or preferences.

We strive to make your stay with us comfortable and encourage you to find Dechenla your ‘home away from home’ for the time you are with us.


Dechenla wilderness resort is a family run business, owned by Norman & Barbara Barichello, together with the Kaska First Nation.

The Kaska are one of the original inhabitants of this great area, sharing this unique area with the Sahtu people. The significance of this area was recognized by the Kaska long before Europeans came here. It is here that the aboriginal people hunted and gathered food in the fall to prepare for the winter. Today the area still provides food and a spiritual retreat for the people of Ross River.

Norman was trained as a wildlife biologist, and has 30 years of experience studying wildlife in northern Canada. He is able to share these experiences as well as his ecological knowledge of the McKenzie Mountains. Norman tries to bring the land alive through his knowledge of birds, flowers and wildlife, through nature tours as well as evening slide shows.

Barbara is a long-time northerner with experience in arctic ecotourism, as well as with social services. Barb will try to make your stay comfortable and enjoyable. As well as providing meals and catering to the needs of the guests at Dechenla wilderness lodge, she loves to share her passion for the land, and her diverse experiences in the north.

Norman and Barbara's son Joshua and friend Merran Smith will guide and host mountain biking and hiking treks into the McKenzie Mountains, along with adventure nature tours in the vicinity of Dechenla wilderness resort. Joshua has grown up spending his summers at Dechenla wilderness resort, and his enthusiasm for the place is infectious. Merran similarly grew up in the north and has a profound passion for the wilderness. She is currently studying environmental science at Bishops University in Quebec.

Our cultural programs, youth programs, and healing programs will be co-hosted by Kaska elders, who will share their knowledge and passion for the land and their culture.