At more than 9,446 sq mi 24,464 sq km), there is a lot to see in Denali National Park and Reserve. There are also many ways to see it from hiking, climbing, fishing or by air.
Part 2 by Air and Up Close
My old Navy buddy Huck came up from Wasilla and joined me in Talkeetna for to go to Denali by air and make a glacier landing. We had an early morning flight out of Talkeetna Air Taxi with about a dozen other folks.
After a short safety briefing the pilot was ready to take off and away we went.
Denali Fly By
The pilot did several flybys of the peak and surrounding mountains and glaciers and she did an excellent job in explaining the sights of the Alaska Range. She even pointed out Denali Base Camp 3 which was where a group of climbers were camping getting ready to tackle the peak!
I took a lot of video with my GoPro which is still in editing. Following clips are from my iPhone:
Glacier Landing and Takeoff
The landing was actually pretty smooth and in a few minutes we all disembarked the aircraft to walk / hike around the glacier. We all took potosand videos and spent about 30 minutes up there. Snow was deep, air temp was about 20 degrees Fahrenheit (-6C).
Standing on the glacier, I realized how lucky I was to end this trip on this mountain with Huck, my best Navy friend from the USS Niagara Falls (1980-82).
I thought about how my wife and adult children supported me through all the planning and stuff for this expedition. I thought about all the wonderful things I saw and experienced in Alaska and the people I met.
We boarded the bush plane, took off and for the next 24 hours I would be traveling to my home 5,000 miles (8045 km) away.
See Denali part 1