The six-million-acre DENALI NATIONAL PARK, 240 miles north of Anchorage, is home to Mount McKinley, which is often shrouded in cloud. The mountain is far from the park’s only attraction, however. Shuttle buses offer a glimpse of a vast world of tundra and taiga, glaciers, huge mountains and abundant wildlife – the Park Service reports that 95 percent of visitors see bears, caribou and Dall sheep, 82 percent moose, and more than one-fifth wolves, along with porcupine, snowshoe hare, red foxes and more than 160 bird species. Visiting Alaska without trying to see Denali is unthinkable for most travellers, and therein lies a problem. In high summer, the visitor centre and service areas out on the Parks Highway are a stream of RVs, tour buses and the like. Things pick up in the park itself, and backcountry hiking, undertaken by only a tiny fraction of visitors, remains a wonderfully solitary experience.

In winter, Denali is transformed into a ghostly, snow-covered world. Motorized vehicles are banned and travel, even for park personnel, is by snowshoe, skis or dogsled as temperatures dive and northern lights glitter over the snows.

Travel offers; book through Rough Guides

USA features

The latest articles, galleries, quizzes and videos.

Total eclipse of the heart (of America): where to see the 2017 solar eclipse

Total eclipse of the heart (of America): where to see the 2017 solar eclipse

Most visitors who trek through the vast interior of the USA are in search of natural wonders on the ground. But on August 21, 2017, they’ll be in search of a…

24 Nov 2016 • AnneLise Sorensen insert_drive_file Article
A Las Vegas survival guide: the dos and don’ts of Sin City

A Las Vegas survival guide: the dos and don’ts of Sin City

Few destinations can match the unbridled hedonism of Las Vegas. Nevada’s pulsating desert city, a tangle of neon-lit casinos and roaring freeways, is one of t…

16 Nov 2016 • Eleanor Aldridge insert_drive_file Article
The dos and don'ts of Thanksgiving travel

The dos and don'ts of Thanksgiving travel

The only thing more challenging than an interminable turkey meal with a squabbling family? Getting there in the first place. Thanksgiving may kick off the mo…

11 Nov 2016 • AnneLise Sorensen insert_drive_file Article
View more featureschevron_right

Join over 60,000 subscribers and get travel tips, competitions and more every month

Join over 60,000 subscribers and get travel tips, competitions and more every month