All About Denali National Park and Preserve

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Denali National Park and Preserve is located in interior Alaska.  The Park and Preserve are two separate national park service units that are managed together.  They had slightly different rules and regulations but for the most part are one in the same.  The units are named for the great mountain in the park.  Denali stands at 20,320 feet and is the highest mountain in North America.  The park was founded to protect the Dall sheep and their ecosystem from overhunting.

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Denali National Park and Preserve Profile

Region Alaska Region
Total Size

6,045,153 acres (9,445.55 sq miles) (24,463.87 sq km)

About the size of Macedonia

Preserve Size

1,304,242 acres (2,037.89 sq miles) (5,278.08sq km)

About the size of Jamaica

Park Size

4,740,911 acres (7,407.67 sq miles) (19,185.79 sq km)

About the size of Slovenia

Elevation Highest point: 20,310 (6,190 m) at the summit of Denali
Lowest point: 240 ft (73 m) at the Yentna River
Location Denali Borough and Matanuska-Susitna Borough
Nearby Cities




Founding Date

Mount McKinley National Park – February 26, 1917

Denali National Monument – December 1, 1978 (a separate unit)

Denali National Park and Preserve – December 2, 1980 (combined the Denali National Monument and McKinley National Park)

Visitors  650,000 (in 2017) 
Busy Season May to September
Visitor Centers

Denali Visitor Center – Open May –  mid-September

Eielson Visitor Center – Open June – mid-September

Toklat River Contact Station – Open June – mid-September

Murie Science and Learning Center – Open Year Around

Denali Bust Depot – Open May –  mid-September

Walter Harper Talkeetna Ranger Station  – Open Year Around

Park Hours Open 365 days (24 hours a day) – The park road is only open to bus traffic during the summer and lottery winners in mid-September.  
Entrance Fees 7-day Per Person Pass – $15
Annual Pass

Denali National Park Pass – $40

American the Beautiful Pass – $80

Pets Yes but best left at home. If bringing, please review the Denali Pet Policy.


Denali National Park and Preserve Climate 
Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun
Average high in °F: 3 10 30 40 57 68
Average low in °F: -13 -10 9 16 34 46
Av. rainfall in inches: 0.5 0.3 0.3 0.3 0.9 2
Av. snowfall in inches: 8.6 5.6 4.2 3.7 0.7 0
Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Average high in °F: 72 65 54 30 11 5
Average low in °F: 50 45 36 17 -3 -11
Av. rainfall in inches: 2.9 2.7 1.4 0.9 0.7 0.6
Av. snowfall in inches: 0 0 1.1 10.1 9.6 10.7


Check out nearby National Park Service Sites (less than a 4-hour drive):

  • None

Check out nearby National Park Service Sites (less than an 8-hour drive):

  • Kenai Fjords National Park
  • Wrangell–St. Elias National Park and Preserve

Check out nearby National Park Service Sites (accessible by air from Anchorage):

  • Lake Clark National Park and Preserve
  • Katmai National Park and Preserve
  • Aniakchak National Monument and Preserve
  • Alagank Wild River
  • Aleutian World War II National Historic Area

Check out nearby National Park Service Sites (accessible by air from Fairbanks):

  • Gates of the Arctic National Park and Preserve
  • Kobuk Valley National Park
  • Noatak National Preserce
  • Cape Krusenstern National Monument
  • Bering Land Bridge National Preserve
  • Yukon-Charley Rivers National Preserve

Check out some of our favorite Denali National Park Products.

Denali Clouds Short-Sleeve T-Shirt Denali National Park: The Complete Visitors Guide to the Mountain, Wildlife, and Year-Round Outdoor Activities
Historic Denali National Park and Preserve: The Stories Behind One of America’s Great Treasures The 59 National Park Mug

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Jennifer Melroy

Jennifer has been obsessed with national parks as a child.  This Tennessee native spent her childhood exploring the Great Smoky Mountains National Park and traveling with her parents to National Parks and around the Caribbean.  She is always planning her next adventure and is ready to see the world while trying to visit all 59 National Park (*She is ignoring the hunk of concrete that just became a national park).

Jennifer Melroy has 86 posts and counting. See all posts by Jennifer Melroy

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