When the Parks Highway--connecting Anchorage and Fairbanks--was completed in 1971, the Denali Highway became a less-travelled alternate route. Since then, the mostly-unpaved road has been a favorite way for Alaskans to get away from the crowds and into the wilderness.
We first (and last) drove the Denali in 1983. We had the chance to do it again and took it.
Entering Crazy Notch Gap, cut by glacial melt water through an older esker. "Esker" is a word you learn while driving the Denali. Ninety miles to Cantwell...
"Intruder Alert!" signals this caribou, with whom we briefly share the road coming out of Crazy Notch Gap. When alarmed, they raise their tails, exposing a white patch like an exclaimation mark that signals others nearby.