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Butch`s adventures with his dad 1995-2000

Camping in Denali Park Sept 1997

December 25th 2006 2:24 pm
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On our 1997 trip to Alaska, Dad and I did an overnite backpacking trip in Denali State Park. We hiked the Little Coal Creek trail which starts off of the Parks Highway and climbs steeply up into the foothills of the Alaska Range topping out onto a plateau after 3 miles. We set up camp by the shores of a small partially frozen lake. The snow depth was about 3 inches here,down from 6 inches a few days ago on our first hike in the area.Dad had to kick thru the ice to get water for supper. I darted inside the tent as soon as it was erected in order to escape the wind which was blowing at a steady clip across the snowfield. The tent was warm by comparison and I remained inside most of the evening! Dad witnessed a glorious sunset over the Alaska Range,the setting sun bathing the mountains in a warm orange glow. Even the summit of Denali,sometimes referred to as Mt Mckinley,was visible. Dad then returned to the tent and fed me and began to cook his own supper. Without warning, a gust of wind lifted the tent partway off the ground and it was a struggle to keep the tent floor even. The winds grew more intense overnite at one point bending the tent nearly in half. Rain was pelting the tent as well and a stream of water was running across the floor of the tent. It was a stressful nite for us both as we were afraid that the high wind would rip the tent to shreads,leaving us exposed to the elements on a dark and cold nite in the mountains! Fortunately the tent held and suffered only a bent pole. We made it safely back to the trailhead the next day. I`ve posted a video clip on my page of this adventure titled "Sunset Denali State Park Alaska".



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