Posted on 02. Aug, 2011 by in Alaska

After all of this climbing we decided to take another rest day, this time in Denali National Park. We rode a shuttle bus to Eielson Visitor Center and along the way there and back observed 7 brown bears, 4 or 5 caribou, a fox, Dall Sheep and Mountain Goats. The scenery driving to Denali from Palmer and in Denali NP itself was astounding. The vastness of the landscape was at times difficult to comprehend. It was an incredible day of sightseeing.

IMG_2707Woodland caribou

IMG_2768Antlers of a woodland caribou left over from the kill of wolves

In an awesome display of raw power, we watched two brown bears run nearly a mile along a loose and rocky river bed, as they were chased by a larger male, defending his territory.

Just beyond, we saw this intriguing talus field not too far off the road. Perhaps next year. There were several large, clean, granite boulders out of the frame, and I would be surprised if this rock pile didn’t hold some gems. This talus sits in prime grizzly habitat.

IMG_2737 New boulders in Denali NP?

IMG_2845 The view from Eielson Visitor Center

IMG_2857 Mother grizzly bear

Nothing brought out the extreme and indifferent nature of the wilderness more than something we saw at the end of the tour. As the bus rounded a corner, several cars had pulled over. The bus slowed, and out of the thick green brush lumbered an obviously injured brown bear. Its front right leg had been rendered useless in what was thought to be a bear trap (according to the ranger on board), and it struggled to cross the rocky gravel bar before disappearing into the dense foliage. The ranger said there was nothing that could be done, and that the injured bear would simply have to live out its days, however difficult those may be.


It was a powerful and humbling day, but the kind I hope for when I travel to places like Alaska.


5 Responses to “Alaska”

  1. Ivo

    02. Aug, 2011

    wow man, sick place! The landscape looks gorgeous!

  2. mark sansone

    03. Aug, 2011

    i think it would be cool if you titled these posts differently, or maybe alaska 1, 2, 3. great articles but every post having the same title?

  3. Zach Wahrer

    03. Aug, 2011

    Amazing pictures! Thanks for sharing them!

  4. bill

    02. Oct, 2011

    If you are interested in coming back up to alaska for another bouldering trip it may be worth your while to stop over in Skagway. there are many good secrets here and I think you may find the stopover worth your while…lots of steep featured granite that no one knows about.

  5. Sherod

    01. Jul, 2013

    Looks like fun!

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