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The two RV Gypsies and family
at Kantishna - the end of the road
in Denali National Park
July 12, 2016

First view of Kantishna from the bus. The Kantishna District was a mining community formed during the early 1900's.  Now primarily a destination for guests visiting the privately owned Kantishna lodges and serves as an access point for backcountry campers. Kantishna is truly the "End of the Road".

first view of Kantishna from the bus

Kantishna Denali Backcountry Lodge sign

The Kantishna Experience includes a lunch, snack and beverages. After lunch, everyone explored the area on their own.

The Kantishna River is a 108-mile tributary of the Tanana River in the U.S. state of Alaska. Formed by the confluence of the McKinley River with Birch Creek in Denali National Park and Preserve, it drains part of the north slope of the Alaska Range. The direction of flow is generally north-northeast. The Toklat River is a major tributary.

The Kantishna River

The Kantishna River and cairns

Karen's sister Ilse Blahak does not like swinging bridges. But she braved it anyway.

Ilse Blahak on the swinging bridge

Ilse Blahak on the swinging bridge

Lee Duquette loves swinging bridges, especially if he can cause them to move a lot.

Lee Duquette Ilse Blahak on the swinging bridge

Lee Duquette Ilse Blahak on the swinging bridge

Lee and Ilse on the swinging bridge

After crossing the swinging bridge and walking a bit, the two RV Gypsies looked back at the lodge and the bridge.

Kantishna lodge and swinging bridge

Kantishna lodge and River

Lee Duquette doing his thing in The Meditation Peace Garden.

Lee Duquette in The Meditation Peace Garden

John built a cairn, a human-made pile or stack of stones. The word cairn comes from the Scottish Gaelic: càrn (plural càirn). Cairns have been and are used for a broad variety of purposes, from pre-historic times up to the present.

John Smythers building a cairn

John Smythers building a cairn

Cairns are often erected as landmarks, a use they have had since ancient times. However, since prehistory, they have also been built and used as burial monuments; for defense and hunting; for ceremonial purposes, sometimes relating to astronomy; to locate buried items, such as caches of food or objects; and to mark trails, among other purposes.

Cairns are used as trail markers in many parts of the world and vary in size.. Cairns may be painted or otherwise decorated.

John Smythers, Karen Duquette, and Ilse Blahak John, Karen and Ilse

John, Karen and Ilse

John Smythers

The two RV Gypsies and family explored the area at Kantishna.

exploring Kantishna

Lee Duquette and John Smythers

Kantishna River

river stream

Looking back at the swinging bridge.

the swinging bridge

the swinging bridge

Kantishna River

Kantishna River

look below

please continue on to the next adventure of the two RV GypsiesContinue on in the correct order of events: wildlife in Denali National Park


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go back to the SD menu You may also choose to return to the Alaska 2016 menu to continue the Alaska adventures in the order of your choice. There will also be a link at the bottom of the Alaska menu for continued navigation back into Canada and the USA.