💯DAYS in AK💚DENALI NATIONAL PARK💚



We arrived today at Denali National Park and for the next week we will be exploring it by tour bus.

Before the week is out we will have spent time in all three campgrounds inside the park that offer RV sites and ridden the various tour buses deep into the middle of the park.


In 2006 when I visited Denali National Park I was able to take a tour bus 85 miles deep into the park to a view of Wonder Lake.

However there has been a "weak spot" in the roadway since the 1960s at Mile 43. Since 2014 the gravel under the roadway has been falling out faster than they can pile it back up on top to keep it passable. In August of 2021 they finally had to close the road and now there are plans to build a bridge over the troubled area.

The National Park website implies that the road will reopen for the Summer of 2023, but no one I spoke to believes that. As of today they haven't even contracted a company to begin the work.


I believe due to the remoteness of the location it will be years before it gets reopened!



WEDNESDAY

ALASKAN STOP #12


RILEY CREEK CAMPGROUND

DENALI NATIONAL PARK, AK


Our arrival at the front gate to Denali National Park.


Our Campsite #A3 at Riley Creek Campground (Mile 0.4 of the Denali Park Road)



FRIDAY

ALASKAN STOP #13


TEKLANIKA RIVER CAMPGROUND

DENALI NATIONAL PARK, AK


Our Campsite #38 at Teklanika River Campground (Mile 29.1 of the Denali Park Road)


It was a tight fit but we squeezed THE POD in there.


Exiting the back of our campsite was a path through the woods that led to the river.


We had to cross several shallow areas of the braided Teklanika River ...


... before we reached the fast moving deeper current of the main channel.



MONDAY

ALASKAN STOP #14


SAVAGE RIVER CAMPGROUND

DENALI NATIONAL PARK, AK


Our Campsite #A24 at Savage River Campground (Mile 12.8 of the Denali Park Road)


Here we had a pull through site with plenty of room.




SCENES FROM DENALI NATIONAL PARK



From the Tundra Wilderness Tour Bus we had a great view of this glacier fed braided river.
The wide river bed is never filled with water these days, but is more representative of the width of the glacier that retreated from here centuries ago.
A small creek bed passes under the roadway from a beautiful valley.
Yes, we did have a caribou surprise us by crossing the road right in front of the tour bus ...
... next a moose popped out of the woods and came out to the roadway to say hello.
Usually wildlife sighting along Denali Park Road is more lkely to appear like this. See that brown spot towards the left side of that big white snow patch in the center of the picture?
Here's a closeup of that same brown spot, it's a grizzly bear scratching out a place to lay down in the snow.
This caribou is looking mighty mangy while still in the process of shedding their winter coat of fur.
They too like to cool off by taking a seat in the snow patches. It also helps discourage the flies and other pests from biting them.
This photo is of the East Fork River at Mile 43 of the park road where all current tour busses must turn around.
There are several of these pretty cool looking portable cabins there. They can be towed and placed all around the park for winter monitoring of the wildlife.
See what appears to be fluffy clouds in the center of this photo?
A closeup reveals this is in fact the two peaks of Mount Denali some 80 miles away towering over these rest of the mountain range.
It's not all mountains here. There is also a lot of grass and tree covered areas too.
While leaving Teklanikia River Campground we stopped for a few minutes to enjoy the 360° view that surrounded us.
The next moring we awoke to see smoke from far away fires had invaded the park.
This is a photo of the midmorning sun trying to shine through the smoke filled sky.
This sign is posted along the Denali Park Road at a location where the best view of Mount Denali can be seen by looking out at the horizon.
Today this is all that can be seen from the location. Go away smoke!



OUR ALASKAN CHALLENGE:
TO VISIT FOR 100+ CONSECUTIVE NIGHTS


COMPLETED

PROGRESS BAR

STILL TO GO
31 69



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Until next time

TWO PEAS