Lauren and I visited the ice museum downtown (Poor Husband had to work). It is small, but definitely worth the stop. The carvings were amazing. It was about 20*F in there so it gave Lauren a small taste of what we experience in the winter. I was freezing, which tells me I am not ready for winter.
We rented a cabin for a night just outside of Denali National Park. This was the view from behind our cabin. It was very beautiful. The pictures don't do the beauty justice. The fall colours on the trees in and outside of the park were amazing.
We drove as far as we could in the park, to mile 15 (Personal vehicles are allowed only that far, and after that point you must take a bus tour. If you are lucky, you can apply for and win a Denali Road Lottery ticket to get to drive the entire park one day in September). During our time in the park, the weather was less than cooperative so we did not get to see Denali, nor did we see any wildlife on our drive. Despite that, the drive was still breathtakingly beautiful.
We decided to hike Horseshoe Lake, just inside the park. We saw an otter eating his lunch on the banks of the lake. On the way back, we heard a beaver fell a tree. Sadly we did not see the beaver but we did come across some trees that beavers had been snacking on.
After our time in the park, we headed down to Anchorage. We took Lauren to the Wildlife Conservation Centre, where we saw bears, moose, bison, elk, muskox, and other animals commonly found in Alaska.
For the first time ever, we did not see Denali on our drive back from Anchorage. The fall colours made up for the fact that the mountain was not visible. I think that autumn in the best time to be in Alaska. Alaska is beautiful anytime of year, but there is something about the yellows and oranges dotting the mountains that makes it especially beautiful.