• pond surrounded by green brush, reflecting a distant range of snow-covered mountains that are dominated by one massive mountain

    Denali

    National Park & Preserve Alaska

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  • Road Open To: Mile 3 (Park Headquarters)

    The Park Road is currently open to Mile 3, Park Headquarters. Wintry conditions beyond that point prevent vehicle travel, though pedestrian travel is permitted. More »

Weather

green hilly landscape, with snow-capped mountains in the distance. heavy clouds and a small rain shower overhead.
Mountains form their own weather, with sudden showers emerging in some valleys while others remain dry or even sunny. Prepare for extremely variable weather.
nps photo / kent miller
 
Check out a current forecast for the Denali area


Weather in Denali is extremely variable. Changes in weather often occur without warning. Many of our rangers tell visitors to expect sun, wind, rain, and clouds, and expect them all on the same day. Snow can fall any month of the year, particularly in the mountains.


Summer

When talking about weather, "summer" generally means late May through early September.

Average summer temperatures range from 33 to 75 degrees Fahrenheit. While rare, it has been known to snow in July, so be prepared for cold weather. Wearing layers of clothing makes it easy to regulate your body temperature.

Also, you'll find that a good waterproof, hooded raincoat is invaluable. June through August are the rainiest months in Denali, although yearly variances sometimes lead to bone dry summers - Denali always keeps you guessing.


Winter

Winters can be extremely cold with temperatures ranging from -40 degrees Fahrenheit and colder, to high 20s on warm days. This kind of extreme cold typically begins by late October or early November, and runs through March.

As mentioned above, snow is possible any month of the year - although snow that falls before mid-September tends to melt quickly. Winter snow levels are not usually sufficient for skiing or other recreation until mid-October or later.

Specialized cold weather gear is necessary for mountaineering and winter visits.


The Other Two Weeks of the Year
Both spring and fall seasons are quite short. Spring weather, which might occur in late April and early May, sees highs into the 40s or 50s F, and lows near or below freezing. In extreme years, however, winter temperatures (below freezing) linger until nearly the start of summer.

Fall weather, generally occurring in September, is similar - highs well above freezing, and lows at or below freezing.

 
Rainy days often yield their own particular style of beauty in Denali
Though rain is common in summer, there is a silver - or multi-hued - lining.
NPS photo / kent miller
 

Did You Know?

a white, two-peaked mountain

Mount McKinley, located within Denali National Park and Preserve, is the highest mountain on the North American continent. Measured from the 2,000 foot lowlands to its snowy summit at 20,320 feet, the mountain’s vertical relief of 18,000 feet is greater than that of Mount Everest.