Today’s Summer Bucket List series travels to the Denali Highway, which is often overlooked by motorists yet offers some of the most spectacular scenery and recreation opportunities in Alaska. For those with a heart for adventure and a little extra time, the highway presents a historic glimpse of the Last Frontier – wilderness in all directions. An abundance of camping, fishing, wildlife viewing and hiking opportunities can be yours with planning.
What to do…
Camping: Permits are not required for non-commercial camping on BLM-administered lands. All camping is limited to 14 days within a 60-day period. BLM campgrounds fill on a first-come, first served basis.
Hiking: Bring topographic maps. Most trails are unmarked. Rubber boots are recommended for crossing wet spots.
Fishing: Lake trout and grayling are found in many lakes and streams. For further information, consult the BLM brochure Alaska Freshwater Fishing or contact the Alaska Department of Fish and Game.
Sightseeing: The entire route presents outstanding opportunities for scenic views of the Alaska Range, boreal vegetation, glacial features and wildlife. Look for caribou, moose, fox, ptarmigan, trumpeter swan and other waterfowl.
Bicycling: The Denali Highway and trails in the area can be rough and dusty, with wet, boggy areas and sharp rocks. Mileposts and many trail heads are not marked. Come prepared with adequate maps, spare parts and repair equipment.
Canoeing/floating: Tangle Lakes and the upper Nenana, Delta and Gulkana rivers offer various boating opportunities. Refer to BLM brochures Delta National Wild & Scenic River, Gulkana National Wild River and Gulkana National Wild River Floater’s Guide.
Visit the following website to plan your trip: http://www.blm.gov/ak/st/en/prog/recreation/denali_highway.html