This was the day we would go into Denali National Park. We left the lodge in Talkeetna early so that we could arrive at the train station in Denali before the train. No, we weren't going to take the train but that is where we would meet the bus into the park. They came once a day to pick up their guest and timed their trips to coordinate with the train from Fairbanks.
With few exceptions, private cars are not allowed inside the park. There are three types of transportation, all on converted school buses. There are tour buses and shuttle buses operated under contract with the Park Service and there are lodge buses, operated by the three lodges located at the end of the road deep inside the park. We would take one of the lodge buses.
Since it is a seven hour journey there were several stops along the way for restrooms and for the snacks that the driver had along. There were also stops for scenery and wildlife viewing. And there were rules. No one was allowed out of the bus when wildlife was in sight, you could open the window to take pictures but no part of the body was to be outside.
It was another drippy, overcast day. I was confident, though, that the skies would clear before we left.
At the Eielson visitor center we saw this incredible piece of artwork
A four panel fiber art creation that was hand dyed, painted, embroidered and quilted.
I couldn't get it all in one shot. It is magnificent!
The classic shot of Denali (Mt. McKinley) is looking south from wonder lake. The driver stopped so we could get a picture. See it? Neither did we.
We reached our destination, the Kantishna Road House. I couldn't believe that we had been on the bus seven hours. Even with the clouds I found the scenery breathtaking and the trip went fast.
It is 91 miles from the depot to the Roadhouse, all but 15 are dirt road. Passengers on the shuttle buses may get off and go hiking and re-board another bus if there is space. Areas where wolves or bears have been sighted are off limits to hikers.
Find other view of the outdoors at Outdoor Wednesday, hosted by Susan at a Southern Daydreamer.