Saturday, November 28, 2009

Better Late Than Never

Well this trip actually happened on Labor just took us about 3 months to write the post. But like the title says, better late than never...

One of my customers who has a cabin up near Fairbanks suggested that we take a trip up towards Denali. She said that the tundra turns colors in the fall and that it is definitely worth the trip. So, on Labor Day we left early in the morning to make the long drive up the Parks Highway.

We picked a perfect day as it was very calm, sunny, and warm. As we worked our way North we started to see a color - yellow. The leaves in Alaska only turn yellow. No orange, red, brown, etc. I am not sure if that is due to the cold or the type of tree but they all turn that one shade.

We were just planning on going up to Denali State Park, but it was such a nice day out and we hadn't really seen any tundra yet so we kept going. A short drive from the furthest point we had gone before led to an exciting discover - our first sighting of a real Alaskan igloo!

Finally, we made it all they way up to Denali National Park (#43 on the list). To go most places in the park you have to take a bus (or win a ticket in a lottery they do every year to drive in), however you are able to drive about 15 miles into the park for free. There is nothing really exciting in those first 15 miles, but we had already come about 150 miles so we decided to make the trip.

The nicest part of the drive was the ability to see Denali from the North, and it was out on this day.

The tundra was definitely worth the trip (and probably another trip around the same time next year). As you can see, the tundra turns several shades of red and when combined with the green of the evergreens, the yellow of the trees, the blues of the sky, and the brown of the mountain above the treeline it leads to some picturesque views (new item on the list #97 - see the Fall foliage of the tundra).

And even just the contrast of the yellow trees with the evergreens leads to some nice views.

On the way back down we stopped in Denali State Park to get some views of Denali from the South.

This trip was one of our favorites from this summer and I am glad my customer mentioned this to me. Since then I have talked to several people who have lived in a Alaska for a long time (in some cases their whole lives) who never knew the tundra changed colors and have never driven up to see.

It has snowed about 6 inches in the past couple of there may be some more posts coming soon with our first winter adventures!


1 comment:

  1. Wow! I'm so jealous that you got to see Denali again. Boo. The pictures were really pretty, though.