A tribute to Denali

A tribute to Denali

An ode to the proud and mighty Denali, the crowning glory of the Alaskan range. A mountain, a reserve park as well as a town bearing the same name, Denali brings joy to the heart and a skip in the step as the author recounts her time in the wilds of Alaska.

I was in Alaska in June 2017. This state is indeed so bewitching that I just couldn’t help paying a tribute to Denali, one of the finest towns of Alaska.

The Koyukan and Athabaskans bow in reverence to a great structure standing high and tall, called Bolshaya Gora by Russian but Denali, Dinale or Daynalee by the natives of Alaska. Every mountain range in Alaska moves as a family, similar in spirit to the mighty Himalayas of the Indian subcontinent. So also his Majesty, the mighty Denali along with the entire Alaska range, comprises mountains that span like obedient kiths & kin.

Kenai Lake | Photo:

Kenai Lake | Photo:

Denali at a height of 20,310 feet is the crowning glory for the planet. It is a still growing tectonic mountain, and therefore is still young in spite of the vagaries of nature like weathering and erosion. Denali’s family includes a host of mountain; two of the prominent are Mount Foraker and Mount Hunter.

Besides its loftiness what is ecstatic and striking is the wilderness, surrounding it called the Denali wilderness. To be amongst the big 5 is simply amazing. The Caribou, the Dall Sheep, the Moose, the Grizzly Bears and the 18 packs of Wolves.

Brown moose surrounded by snowfield | Photo by Ivars Krutainis

Brown moose surrounded by snowfield | Photo by Ivars Krutainis

In June when we were at Denali, it was fascinating to sight a host of beautiful flora. We saw and admired the state flower forget me not, louse wort, columbine, larkspurs, fireweed and some chocolate lilies. I was fortunate enough in seeing the hills in streaks of pink Louse Wort, blue lupine and yellow moss campion. To top it all, are the beautiful lakes dotted all over the place and my favourite has been the Kenai Lake, a beautiful zig zag shaped water body forming a spectacular destination for fishing and outdoor activities. The more I delve into the spirit of this mystic land, unending is the tale.

Grizzly bear lying down | Photo by: Amber Kipp

Grizzly bear lying down | Photo by: Amber Kipp 


Cover Photo: Denali National Park and Preserve | By:, AlbertHerring

Read also: The Alaska Chronicles 

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About the Author /

The Principal of one of Mumbai’s most reputed schools , Hiranandani Foundation School, and a seasoned teacher and educationist herself, Mrs Patnaik attributes her success to the experiences she had in different schools, Pan India.


  • Lakhbir K Pannu

    October 4, 2019

    Hello mam,
    My name is Lakhbir Kaur Pannu not sure if you remember me , I was your student in K.V.No.2 Navy Nagar ,Colaba Mumbai, You taught us History and the way you taught was so amazing that it became my favorite subject (just for that year), You use to teach so passionately I still remember you asked us to watch tora tora tora movie so many times 🙂 I just googled your name and this article showed up , Its really interesting and now I want to visit alaska. I live in New Hampshire ,USA . I am a software programmer and work for the stat of New Hampshire .


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