Born in 1928, Lorene Ellis grew up in Texas going from one ranch to another as her father could find work as a cowboy. In her early teens she married Bill Ellis and they later moved to Alaska to start life as pioneers in the early 1950’s. After a series of setbacks, including losing their house in Anchorage to a fire, Lorene and Bill finally settled at Nabesna. From the mid 60’s onward Lorene has done it all, and done it while raising 4 children. Lorene unfortunately now suffers from advanced Alzheimer’s and requires 24 hour care in Anchorage. While she may have forgotten her amazing past, all the Ellis family try to keep those memories alive.
~1928 to 1998. Bill Ellis was never one to let anything hold him back. He did what he wanted, and did it his way. But at the same time he was also very generous and was one of the few people that helped the National Park Service during their early years. Bill and Lorene Ellis were outfitters for the entire state of Alaska in the mid 60’s. From polar bears to dall sheep he guided clients for all manner of Alaskan wild life. He was also one of the early Bush Pilots and established many of the landing sites still used to this day in the Wrangell Mountains. There could be quite literally be a book written about his adventures during his career, so for now we will end his story there.
Kirk Ellis, life long resident of Nabesna. A son of pioneering parents Bill and Lorene. Kirk and his brothers grew up in this remote area, developing the strength and skills it takes to live and thrive in the wilderness of Alaska. Home schooled and self taught, Kirk is a licensed bush pilot, guide, IA aircraft mechanic, carpenter, and jack of all trades. Although Alaska has gone through many changes since he was a boy, Kirk and his family have adapted with those changes, and now enjoy sharing their beautiful home with visitors to this great state.
Gennie and Kirk Ellis have lived in the Nabesna area for over 40 years and raised 4 children here. Gennie wears many hats, school teacher, cook, accountant, manager, phone operator but office work is not her true calling, she lives to be outside in the sunshine. Most times you will find her hauling brush, digging, maintaining trails, or just out for a walk.
The eldest of Kirk and Genie’s four children. Isaac fell into the support roll for the business early on; he serves as the “tech support” for the Nabesna area. A collage graduate and licensed aircraft mechanic he specializes in the paperwork side of the business. Isaac has a pilots license, but lately has been too busy with office work to do much flying (or anything else for that matter). He also manages this website.