Mt. McKinley (Denali)Posted: October 14, 2011
We have been watching for Mt. McKinley, also known by its native Athabascan name, Denali “the great one,” since our arrival in Alaska. We have seen it several times through openings in the clouds and each time I am amazed at just how tall it really is. Standing at 20,320 feet Denali is often referred to as “the rooftop of the world.” It is the tallest mountain in North America. In some way it seems to stand for Alaska, the impressive height, the isolation, the cold. It is wilderness at its wildest.
On our way back from Girdwood this weekend, we were rewarded with clear skies and unobstructed views of the mountain. The stark white of the peak against the crayon-blue colored sky almost seemed fake. To pretty to be real. We watched Denali rise in the distance from the highway, poking up on the horizon then disappearing, only to materialize again when we crested the next hill. It was like a game of hide and seek. We were rushing for the south view point, so we could stop, take pictures, and just look. We were not disappointed.