Positioned in the heart of Alaska between Anchorage and
Fairbanks, Denali National Park contains some of the most accessible wilderness
in the world. The park hosts incredible landscapes, numerous wildlife varieties,
and vast wilderness with the crowning feature being North America's tallest peak, Mount
McKinley. Denali, “The High One,” as properly named by the native Athabascan
people, rises to 20,320ft, and simply dwarfs the surrounding 600 mile Alaskan
range whose peaks would still be impressive on their own.
Denali National Park encompasses more
than 6 million acres (larger than the state of Massachusetts), and includes a
complete sub-arctic eco-system with large mammals such as grizzly bears, wolves,
moose, Dall sheep, and caribou. The park was originally established to protect
its large mammals, not because of the mountain. Named as Mt. McKinley National
Park on Feb. 26, 1917, it was designated a wilderness area and incorporated into
Denali National Park and Preserve in 1980.
The park contains only one main road,
and it is not open to private vehicles. The park service operates a series of
camping and tour buses that run a schedule throughout the day. This provides
limited disturbance to the wilderness and easy transportation through the park.
You can get off of any of the buses just about anywhere in the park, and within
moments you’re on your own. It is truly remarkable what you can see from one
bus on one road in the middle of 6 million acres.
In my mind, Denali is like no other place on earth.
The landscape is expansive, the wildlife is abundant, and the fall tundra colors
are unmatched. With Mt.McKinley crowning the skies, Denali National Park is a
wilderness treasure to preserve and protect for generations to come.
Images of Denali