Days 13 - August 23, 2009
Miles Traveled: N/A
Notable Stops: Bus trip from entrance of Denali National Park to Wonder Lake
Notable weather: Completely cloudy, rain, snow during parts of the bus trip
This morning we woke up at 5am to catch our 6:15 am bus into to Wonder Lake inside Denali National Park. Although it rained on us last night when we woke up the sky overhead was mostly clear and it was not raining. We thought/hopped we might have a mostly clear day.
Personal vehicles are only allowed a few miles into the park. To travel further you must take a park bus, walk or ride a bike. We chose the park bus; the green camper bus to be exact. This trip was cheaper than one of the excursion buses and I heard the wild life viewing was just as good as the excursion bus. Another benefit was that if we wanted to get off the bus and walk around a bit we could and then catch the next bus.
On the bus ride we saw a moose crossing the road, several more moose just hanging out, several caribou, three foxes playing, some wolves and a mother grizzly bear with three cubs. Most of these animals were actually close enough to see and identify. Although, they were still too far away for me to get a good picture with my camera because my zoom lens has been broken for a while. Fortunately, the zoom on the video camera is awesome so Matt got good video footage of the animals and was able to take some still photos with the video camera too.
We did not see Mt. McKinley or any of the sister peaks or much of any mountains for that matter. It was cloudy and rainy. However, we were content to see the wildlife.
Wonder Lake was not much to behold because it was so cloudy and rainy. However, it is still a pretty lake.
On the way back from Wonder Lake when we stopped to view a couple bull moose laying in a field it started to snow lightly.
The bus trip was 11 hours total. When we were back I was very happy never to have to hear the bus driverís voice again and never to have to smell the guy in front of me again. The bus driver sounded like he was Eeyore from Winnie-the-Pooh if Eeyoreís wife had left him and his dog died. The bus driver told us at the beginning of the trip that he would not speak much. Unfortunately, he drowned on and on in his low depressed grumble almost endlessly for the entire 6-hour trip to Wonder Lake. Although the bus driver spoke less on the 5-hour trip back from the lake he still spoke entirely too much. The guy in front of me smelled like greasy hair and cheap cologne.
Despite the annoying voice of the bus driver and the smelly guy, it was a good trip.
|Matt and Jess on the Green Bus to Wonder Lake in Denali National Park||On the Way to Wonder Lake|
|Matt Plays with Antlers at One of the Rest Stops on the Way to Wonder Lake||The Shores of Wonder Lake|
|Looking Across Wonder Lake - On a clear day we would be seeing Mt. McKinley and its mirror reflection in the lake.||One of Three Foxes we Saw Along the Way|
|Two Bull Moose Hang Out in the Brush||Bull Moose|
|Bull Moose||Bull Moose|
|Caribou Grazing||Caribou Grazing|