Ptarmigan Tracks

The Newsletter of Camp Denali and Parkside Guest House

Online Version 2021

2021 Summer Roundup

In between March flights to observe the Muldrow surge, and September flights to double-check our hasty evacuation shut-down work, this summer actually felt comparatively normal. It was immensely rewarding to host guests again after being closed for COVID-19 in 2020. Although things looked a little different—for example, 14 small dining tables replacing our five long communal tables—it was good to be back in the company of fellow travelers and staff, and we concluded the summer with no known instances of COVID-19. Thanks to everyone who supported our mitigation efforts.

2021 operations commenced with our opening crew flying over the Alaska Range from Talkeetna in ski-equipped planes due to deep snow in Kantishna. (We understand that we’re now featured in a training video about how to turn a turbine Otter around on a runway using a snowmobile!) Projects for the season focused on general maintenance, and on fully commissioning our new solar array. The benefits of gaining energy independence ahead of the Park Road closure cannot be overstated.

On the staff front we enjoyed many outings, of which trips to observe the Muldrow were a definite highlight. We also established a hopefully new tradition—Nenanapalooza—which entails Simon and 15 day-off staff commandeering one of the buses for a drive out of the park and a day spent rafting the Nenana River on Denali’s eastern boundary. In other staff news, Camp Denali was honored to host a staff wedding in July, and to provide the backdrop for two other engagements of staff and former staff.

Back to Online Version 2021