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"Hike into the unknown!" Top 5 Page for this destination Denali National Park and Preserve Things to Do Tip by worldtrekker

  We were possibly the 1st explorers on this summit!
by worldtrekker

Take the shuttle bus into the park and make time for a hike into this fascinating wilderness! This photo was taken near the summit of a mountain we had picked out while on our tour of the park. We asked the driver to stop and I got out with half my group and we forged our way across creeks and into the untamed wilderness. The rest of my group continued on to Eielson Visitor Center and we were to meet them back at camp later on. This was a pure adrenaline rush. There was no trail and we had no idea what we were in for. We hiked along ridgelines, through dense shrubery, over tundra and fjorded a stream. It was an incredibly free feeling. We were possibly the first explorers to come this way. Every now and again we'd see some bear scat (crap) which really put us in our place. We weren't the highest members in the food chain here! We took the necessary precautions to avoid a bear encounter; talking and making noise and it obviously worked. We didn't see any bears. We also saw signs of other animals. A dug out burrow high on this slope, Dall sheep scat, and other signs. It's times like that, when I wish I knew how to tell what animals made those signs! Looking in a book to figure it out is really confusing. We returned from this hike with a major sense of accomplishment.
When we returned to camp (Savage River Campground at mile 13 in the park), we found out that the others had had a real bear encounter in our campsite! A moose cow came charging through camp with a grizzly on her tail. My group confided in me that they had all climbed up onto the roofrack of our 15 passenger van to be out of the way and to observe. :-) I had some nervous campers that night! This moose may have been searching for her calf. Two calves had been killed by grizzlies nearby in the past few days and the areas were closed off to hikers. The calves take a few days to be consumed and the bears will stash their prize and ferociously protect it. A bear will kill a full grown adult moose as well.

Directions: Have the shuttle bus driver stop anywhere along the park road, get out, and hike...

Review Helpfulness: 3.5 out of 5 stars

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  • Written Feb 25, 2003
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