Alaska's Winter Horizon

Alaska's Winter Horizon

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Denali Trip, Day 3, Part 2

Remember to click on the pictures to make them larger.

It was late in the afternoon by the time we got out on the Savage River Loop Trail in the Denali National Park. By this time, there were very few hikers left on the trail. We saw maybe 6 people during the whole time we hiked this 2 mile loop. Due to camera problems, this was actually the second time we had hiked this trail today. On the first hike the camera wasn't working properly. We decided to come back and hike again after we had purchased another memory card. With such a beautiful and serene walk, we really wanted to capture it on film. The trail basically followed the edge of the Savage River for about a mile. You then crossed the river and hiked on the other side of the river back to the main road. We saw many cool rock formations and we posted photos of a couple of them. We also saw where a bear had been digging for ground squirrels. Large chunks of ground had been turned over in his pursuit of food. Kinda made us momentarily wish we had brought along bear spray! The trail wasn't very wide and in several places was close to the edge of the incline. As we continued, we noticed large areas of snow still on the sides of the mountains on May 30th. We took the binoculars with us and were able to see several Dall sheep high above us. Where the trail crossed the river, we noticed a spur trail that seemingly led over 2 ridges to a nice view. We made it to the top of this trail but instead of the wide valley we expected, it was similar to the terrain we had crossed. It was, of course, still awesome and beautiful. As we turned for the last part of the hike, the mosquitoes and gnats started to get cranked up. They didn't get that bad, but were about like the late spring afternoon in most areas of Tennessee. We did see more snowshoe hares and ptarmigan before making our way back to the car.

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