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Denali Park Allows Private Cars - With Limits

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With an expected pandemic-caused shortage of tourists at Denali National Park this summer, the Park Service is increasing private vehicle access along the Park Road. The Road will be closed at Savage River, Mile 15 as of June 1, but Denali National Park spokesperson G.W. Hitchcock says people can register online

for a limited number of daily permits to drive out to Teklanika at Mile 30, during the month of June. 

Hitchcock says Phase 2 of the program, which will run over five long weekends in July, August and September, will provide a limited number of daily reservation spots to drive out the road as far as the Eielson Visitors Center at mile 66. He says both permit opportunities are being rolled out online in batches.

Summer park road traffic is governed by a vehicle management plan, and Hitchcock says the number of private vehicles allowed out the road on any day, will be determined by how many private business tour vehicles, which are also being permitted this summer, and regular Denali  shuttle and tour buses, are on the road.

Hitchcock acknowledges that all the opportunities and schedules are a little confusing, and encourages people to go to the Denali National Park website to read up, and apply for a slot if interested.  He says Denali’s bus service will start July 1st, the same day park visitors centers open.