Thursday, July 17, 2008

Denali National Park

Day 24, July 17, 2007-22 miles on bike; 132 miles on bus. Today was a mixture of good and boring.

We got up, got dressed, had the continental breakfast offered by the motel, and went to the park to check in for the bus ride. All of the check-in procedure worked just like clockwork.

The bus ride was one of several offered by the park. It was a 9 hour (total), 66 mile ride into the park on a bus like a school bus.

We were fortunate that the bus was less than half full, leaving each of us window seats. We had been advised that the left side of the bus was the best, so we could possibly see Mt. McKinley. Of course, it was very cloudy, so seeing the big mountain would be impossible today. It's viewable only a small percentage of the time, so our trip was like most folks'.

The ride started, and we rode and rode and rode. Part of the ride was on pavement, but about 80% was on dirt and gravel. Bumpy! Noisy! Lots of gear whine and engine moise. And DUST!

Over the course of the day, we saw 3 Grizzly bear, Arctic Ground Squirrel, Red Foxes, Dall Sheep, Moose, Snowshoe Hare, Beaver, and other small animals. I liked the bear best since I didn't see them the last time I was there.

It rained some; lightly scattered during the day. It was pretty cool and overcast, with some variable winds.

A good day with very little riding on the bikes.

Tomorrow-back to the base.

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