Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Departure time is approaching...

It’s our last week here at Denali and we will be sad to leave! We’ve really enjoyed meeting people from all over the world and sharing the wilderness of Denali with so many people.   In particular, we've had a lot of visitors from Israel, Switzerland, and Australia.
Last Thursday we were granted a pass to drive the road in our car. Unfortunately, you really can’t see that much from a car so the experience wasn’t all that great, however, we did spot some moose out at Wonder Lake and that was worthwhile! We’ve seen a lot more bears than moose!

The road into the park is all gravel and beyond the first 29 miles, quite narrow. Parts of the road are cut out of the mountain side and are perched on very steep mountain sides. Its really quite scarry, especially if you are on the outside of the road! You look down and it’s a really long way down!! I took this picture of a bus coming at us on a very steep section of
the road. Notice how narrow the road is. Hard to believe but there is enough room for two buses to pass, albeit very closely!! We’ve had a lot of rain so the danger of rock and mud slides also exists and there was a small mudslide late one night. The park service was able to get it cleared and have the road ready to go by the next am.

The road near Polychrome Pass:

A couple of nights ago as I was closing all the shades I looked out and there was a lynx standing no more than 15’ from the camper looking straight at me! What a beautiful face he had with the black tufts of hair on his ears. Unfortunately I didn’t get a photo as I was more concerned with radioing Dick to watch out for the lynx. He was walking Chena and I really didn’t want him to come upon the lynx with Chena in tow.

The campground is on the Teklanika River and there are bears moving down the river getting closer to the campground. They’ve been spotted on the river a number of times and are getting closer to the campground every day. The rangers say that its just a matter of time before they come into the campground. They will most likely come in from the river which is the further point away from us so we probably won’t see them. We have been cautioning our campers to be bear aware! There’s never been a bear fatality here in the park so I don’t worry about it too much. It’s really interesting how easily the wildlife and people coexist here. For the most part the wildlife ignores the people. It is really important to never let the animals get food from the humans – when that happens, the animals see humans as a food source and that’s when the havoc begins. The saying is so true, a fed bear is a dead bear.

Some of the animals in the park are wearing collars so that their movements can  be recorded.  The wolf picture in a previous post has a collar.  Yep, I think they're tracking him to see when he will arrive in Raleigh for the first football game!  LOL, GO Wolfpack!!  Many of our visitors have seen the pack - there were 7 pups to start but now there seems to be only 5.  The pack has been seen with the pups in tow and several adults.  We have not been that fortunate and I am soooo jealous!  One of our visitors had a photo of a wolf with a caribou hind quarter in its mouth!!

Time to go, we have to do laundry today!

1 comment:

  1. awesome photos! sounds like an awesome time still, enjoy!