Published on : Wednesday, April 15, 2020
Alaska’s Denali Park Road has been closed to recreational access. On Tuesday the National Park Service announced the closure and mentioned that the move has been undertaken in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. It also said that Alaska is following advice from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and state health mandates aimed to curb the spread of the deadly coronavirus disease. According to the statement, the road beyond Mile Marker 0 will now stay inaccessible by the public.
The National Park Service has highlighted guidelines related to social distancing, staying at home, and the restriction of non-essential, in-state travel between Alaska communities. Denice Swanke, Acting Superintendent added in a statement that though the decision was difficult for the park, the move was inevitable.
He mentioned that due to continuous visits to the park from areas of under community spread, including Anchorage and Fairbanks the park road has been closed. He said the changes were necessary to support the Governor’s health mandates and travel restrictions in order to maintain the safety of the employees and the surrounding communities.
However, the Park Service also informed that the public can still travel through the park along the George Parks Highway. They can access the post office near the entrance of the park. In addition, subsistence activities allowed under the Alaska National Interest Lands Conservation Act in areas of the preserve are still permitted. The public is also allowed to pay a visit if they are accessing the park by means other than the park road.