Outside Science (inside parks): Picturing a Changing Climate in Denali National Park

Outside Science (inside parks): Picturing a Changing Climate in Denali National Park


Hey guys, its Michael with
Outside Science: Inside Parks. It’s cool to look at old photos
to see how things have changed. like this photo here in
Rocky Mountain National Park. In this month’s episode,
we follow a group of young scientists
into the backcountry of Denali National Park. They took historic photos
up to Sunset Glacier to document landscape changes. Check it out! We’re out here at Teklanika
River at our field camp and we’re about to embark
on a backpacking expedition. The goal of this program is to
bring youth from urban areas of Alaska, out into their public
lands and particularly here into Denali National Park. Our group started
with a training phase where they’re learning to
become backcountry travelers, some skills and techniques
needed to be an efficient
backcountry traveler and a low-impact backcountry
traveler here in Denali. Basically the program is
for youth stewardship, fostering the youth
to basically get out into the park
and be inspired here. We could tell kids about climate
change, we could tell kids all about Denali, but bringing them
out into the park and getting to show them or let them feel
cold glacier water it leads towards this philosophy
in experiential education and that is “Don’t
teach me about Denali, teach me with Denali.” We’re here to explore
the changes in Denali whether it’s the
population of the animals or the change in
vegetation or climate. Today we stopped and were doing
basically a repeat photography at Sunset Glacier. So there were some previous
photos taken of Sunset Glacier and so we’re actually
going out there to find that particular spot where
the photo was documented of the glacier and the landscape
and seeing how that is changing. I chose to come because I want
to learn more about nature and how human actions
affect the environment. I want to like see
animals up close like that grizzly bear we saw because I’ve never
seen one before. It was just really cool
to see the size of it and that it was so close. Bringing youth out here
we can expose them to some of the science that
we’re finding out here and hopefully give them
some ideas for their future about how they may get
involved with science or maybe that they just increase their
appreciation of a park like this and become a life long steward for Denali National
Park and Preserve. To me, getting out in nature, seeing the environment
is pretty important. It can have an impact to
basically help be stewards for the land and keep it
for future generations. I believe it’s important for
people to get out and see that there is a world
beyond skyscrapers and T.V. I think kids
do have a tendency to gravitate especially lately
towards electronic devices and social media, but
it’s also good to get out and see the world. That was one wild
hike: water crossings, wildlife and miles of tundra. We hope you enjoyed
this month’s episode of Outside Science:
Inside Parks. Join us next month when we
head to Saguaro National Park in the Arizona desert.

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