Getting on/off a bus. Driving 30 miles total, approximately 1 hour. Hiking; 2-miles on a maintained trail; approximately 3 hours total; uneven ground, rock steps, some rugged areas, no significant elevation change.
At Riverside Hall, we’ll enjoy breakfast with rotating selections, such as eggs, hot and cold cereals, granola, and fresh fruit, plus coffee, tea, and water.
Boarding a bus, we’ll travel into Denali National Park where we will get to know the landscape and history of the Park with one of our field educators. Be sure to bring your camera on this wilderness walk along the Savage River Loop Trail, a great area to spot caribou, Dall sheep, marmot, squirrels, and ptarmigan.
In the field, we’ll eat to-go lunches that we packed after breakfast, featuring cold cuts and other sandwich fixings, snacks, and fresh fruit.
Returning to Denali’s Visitor Center, we’ll take shuttle buses to Park Headquarters, about 1.5 miles from the Visitor Center, to meet Denali's canine rangers and watch a mushing demonstration. Denali National Park is the only National Park in the world that has a working sled dog kennel. The 30-minute Ranger-led presentation includes the opportunity to pet and visit with the sled dogs! Those who would rather spend this time exploring the Visitor Center are welcome to do so. Denali National Park's main campus includes the Denali Visitor Center, the Morino Grill restaurant, and Alaska Geographic bookstore. There will be time for independent exploration, during which the Group Leader will be available to answer any questions. The Denali Visitor Center features an impressive exhibit hall and regular showings of "Heartbeats of Denali," a 20-minute non-narrated film that shares visuals of the various seasons, landscapes, and wildlife of this beautiful place. We’ll then return to the Denali Education Center.
At Riverside Hall, we’ll enjoy delicious local fare for dinner. This may include locally sourced vegetables, homemade breads, and a dessert that will leave you wanting more. Coffee, tea, and water will be provided.
Evening presentation topics and locations will vary depending on local speaker availability. Presentation topics range from predator-prey relationships to climbing Denali. The schedule for evening presenters at the Denali Education Center will be announced on the first day of the program.