Running the 92 Mile Long Denali Park Road

Bill Vondermehden wants to be the first to run the 92-mile Denali Park Road non-stop. Rangers report no record of anybody even thinking about doing that.


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Mount McKinley Was Not Included in Original Denali National Park Boundaries

A history of Alaska tourism notes that when Denali National Park was established in 1917 it didn’t even include Mount McKinley.


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Tea Party Candidate Wants State Ownership of Denali

Joe Miller, the Tea Party candidate for U.S. Senate from Alaska wants the state to own Denali.


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Sarah Palin Might Be Right: Kodiak Is Bigger Than Hawaii Island (in terms of coastline)

The Anchorage Daily News has an amusing tale of determining the U.S. largest island — Kodiak Island or the Island Of Hawaii. The debate was spurred by Sarah Palin’s calling Kodiak the biggest. The News concluded that Hawaii is the biggest is in terms of square miles but Kodiak is bigger in terms of coastline. The article notes that Kodiak is often lumped together with various smaller islands associated with it. We wandered into the discussion because of a key word celebrating cartographer Bradford Washburn who has stunning photos of the mountain.


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No Charges Against Backpacker Who Shot Grizzly With Handgun in Denali National Park

The National Park Service has decided not to charge a hiker in the case of the shooting of a Grizzly in Denali National Park

The backpacker shot and killed a grizzly bear with a handgun in Denali National Park in May 2010. This is the first instance where a bear was shot in the wilderness area of the park. Newly enacted national park regulations permit guns but not the discharge. The hiker fired at the bear nine times with 45-caliber, semiautomatic pistol and then reported the incident to rangers who closed Igloo Canyon until they found the bear.


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Controversy Over Sarah Palin’s “Ascent” of Denali

Sarah Palin’s tweet that she was going to climb ‘Sweettooth’ has stirred controversy over whether the sliver of Denali she said she was climbing even exists. Theres a Sugartooth which is rated between 5.6 — available hand and footholds, accessible to experienced climbers — and 5.10, or “no holds.”


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Denali National Park Studying Impact of Feces on Kahiltna Glacier

The National Park service is studying the impact of the long term depositing of feces on the Kahiltna Glacier. Since 2006 (optionally at 2000) Denali had been using “Clean Mountain Cans,” which serve as ultra-portable, snap-shut toilets, strapped to climbers’ packs and toted around the mountain. Climbers had been permitted to dump the contents of the can into crevasses at the 7,000-foot and 15,000-foot levels.


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Sarah Palin Reported “Hiking Mount McKinley” at Sweettooth as Bristol and Levi Announce Engagement

It’s amazing what you learn when you pick up the tabloids. In coverage of the Bristol Palin-Levi Johnston romance is a report that “Sarah Palin was reportedly hiking Mount McKinley (elevation: 20,320 feet)” Sarah of course may find that “hike” easier than accepting the union. Or is that just another euphemism like “hiking the Appalachian Trail”?

Update: Sarah tweeted that she and Willow were climbing a “sliver” of Denali called “Sweettooth.” “Sarah Palin’s Alaska” on Discovery Channel.


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Army Called to Rescue Mount McKinley Who Was Acting Too Erratically for the Park Service

Two Fort Wainwright army helicopters were called to rescue a mountaineer on a guided Denali Climber who was acting “eratically.” The Park Service helicopter normally used in rescues was deemed unsafe for such a situation. The Park Service reported they have never encountered such a situation.

Details released subsequently said the climber wanted to paraglide off the summit (although he signed an affidavit saying he wouldn’t). Climbers on the West Bustress told park officials of unsafe glacier travel, lack of appropriate gear, littering and strange mannerisms. He was being treated for hypothermia at the 14,200 foot camp when officials discovered the paraglider in his sled. He was was strapped on a backboard and transported by Alaska State Troopers to Fairbanks Memorial Hospital where he was released after spending a night.

The 25-year-old climber Andrew Randolph is from Pennsylvania and said he was being discriminated against because he was climbing solo. The government is considering billing him for the rescue.


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Fatality on Mount McKinley Cassin Ridge

Denali National Park released the following press release of a fatality on Mount McKinley:
(more…)


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