Monday, October 19, 2009
After a year of not leaving this 20 mile radius, I decided that I needed to go see something - anything other than Fairbanks and North Pole. The weather was still great, so we decided to do a day trip and head down to Denali National Park.
It was a nice drive - aside from Tori's scream/squeal that she is constantly making. It is seriously eardrum-splitting. Anyone know how to cure a kid of that? She is starting to speak, but she tends to make the most high-pitched, glass-shattering noise when she is unhappy - or bored - or wants something but can't express it. It is not very fun to hear when you're stuck in a car with her. Trust me. I'm hoping that she is cured of this habit before we move and make our cross-continent trip.
Anyway, we headed to Denali. Almost everything was completely closed - gift shops, gas stations, hotels. I mean seriously closed - like boards on the windows for the season. There is usually quite a bit of snow on the ground by this time of year and there aren't any tourists camping and hiking. I am very grateful that the snow is waiting a bit later this year.
We were able to drive about 13 miles into the park. Beyond that, (during the summer) you are required to take a bus to get around the rest of the park. They do a "lottery" each year and people are randomly chosen to get the chance to actually drive through the park in September. That would have been so cool!!!
Amazingly enough, we didn't really see any wildlife in the park. I was waiting for a hungry bear to come out and attack me while I was engrossed in taking pictures, but it didn't happen. :)
We did see a bobcat cross the road in front of us on the way home though. Wish I had been quicker with the camera!!
Unfortunately, there was a lot of fog/cloud cover and the views of the mountains weren't crystal clear. It was still breath-taking though. And it was so nice that the park was empty.
We are now back at home, resting our eardrums. :)