After our visit to New England last year, carefully timed to catch the height of the fall colours, it never occurred to us that we might encounter spectacular fall foliage in Alaska. However, that’s exactly what we stumbled on once we set off down the Glenn Highway in pursuit of Dall sheep and an unusual glacier. Next up was Denali National Park. Denali means The Great One, and it is an aptly named mountain indeed. Here are our photos of these two remarkable locations.
Yes, that really is its name
The facing edge of a glacier is called the toe
If I’d known there were picnic tables on the glacier, I would have brought my lunch!
A guided group ventures beyond the picnic tables
Melt channels give the surface a weird texture
Unlike other glaciers we have seen, Matanuska wends its stately way along the bottom of a valley, making for a rather startling sight
Any guesses on which one is Denali?
Scenery in Denali National Park
On the day we took one of the parks services shuttle buses deep into Denali National Park, Denali itself was hidden in the clouds. The foothills nevertheless made for pretty impressive viewing.
The addition of some wild weather to the naked geology on display all around us was almost too beautiful to bear. This sudden rainstorm that swept through a valley opposite us was my favourite moment in Denali NP.
Scientists are avidly studying these little mammals, who hibernate with a core body temperature below freezing (approx. -3℃). If something similar could be achieved in humans, it could lead to important medical advances, e.g. in the treatment of Alzheimer’s.
A light dusting of fall snow leaves the ridges of this mountain starkly outlined
The Savage River loop was one of the short hikes we did in Denali NP