July 17, 2015
As a thank you for our work we received free bus passes to go wherever we wanted on Friday. Denali National Park doesn’t let private vehicles to drive past the 20 mile marker. The end of the road is at mile 92.4 miles and is a 12 hour round trip. On a bus. No food or drink other than water is available. Bring your own. This has helped immensely in keeping the animals wild. I found myself wishing for coffee and had to remind myself of the benefits of this system. It would be so nice to have a private car and be able to stop anywhere. But only if no one else got to. I can’t even imagine the traffic jams around animal sitings. Too bad Yosemite and Yellowstone can’t convert to this system. It will never happen.
I chose to go out to Wonder Lake hoping the mountain would be visible. Wonder Lake is much closer to the mountain and many classic photos were made here. It is an 11 hour round trip to mile 85. Way too long to be on a bus.
The mountain never did show himself (Denali is a he mountain). We saw 7 grizzlies, all too far away. There were lots of caribou. A few tiny white moving specks were Dall sheep. No moose, wolves or fox this trip.
Not seeing the mountain was disappointing but there is lots more beauty in this park besides the snow covered mountains.