Thursday, August 14, 2008

Denali Log: A Couple of Perfect Days

After days of rain…Yesterday we awoke to clear skies and hustled everyone up at 6 AM on a frosty morning to catch the first Wonder Lake shuttle bus. By some fortunate stroke of luck the day before we had secured the last permit for the Teklanika Campground and were already 29 miles into the Park. This day was an amazing gift: the entire snowcapped Alaska Range, including magnificent Denali (which Will notes “changes from each direction”) were in full view the entire cloudless day. During the long 10 hour round trip bus ride we feasted on unobstructed views of the most magnificent landscape in the world as we climbed, bumped, and jostled our way to Wonder Lake. Fortunately, the kids have grown quite used to long rides and no one complained. There were plenty of breaks to take short hikes and watch wildlife [Caribou, Beaver, Falcon, Eagles, and 10 Grizzly Bears!] throughout the day. Back at camp that evening, Dave, Kim and I were on our way to a Ranger Talk when we heard the howl of a wolf. Following our ears, we headed out onto the main Park Road as a female wolf was emerging from the forest, followed by four cubs! I am deeply grateful to the National Park Service for preserving and protecting this magnificent land for wildlife. It is, perhaps, a matter of survival for us – the human species – to have the vast wildness of Denali as a reminder of natural systems in balance with limited human intervention.


Anonymous said...

Hey Guys,

I'm glad you all got to see the mountain,. I wish I was there.



Anonymous said...

amazing guys!!!

Bill B.

mwittke said...

I agree, concerning the preservation of wildlife mission of National Parks. Annie and I sure enjoyed the wolf view (though none that close) during the Yellowstone Institute Elk and Wolf Program we took. I'm yearning to go back...or go to Denali for wildlife and more! Thank you for sharing your photos and experiences with us! It brings us there...a little.