Denali National Park and Preserve is seen in March 2019. (Photo by Erin Thompson/Peninsula Clarion)

Denali National Park and Preserve is seen in March 2019. (Photo by Erin Thompson/Peninsula Clarion)

Denali Road Lottery opens Saturday; park closed to snowmachines

The application period for the 2021 Denali Road Lottery will open on May 1 and will be open until May 31.

All areas of Denali National Park and Preserve are now closed to snowmachine use due to inadequate snow cover, the National Park Service announced Thursday.

Lands closed to snowmachine use also include lands within the former Mount McKinley National Park on both the north and south sides of the Alaska Range, per federal regulation.

The application period for the 2021 Denali Road Lottery will open on May 1 and will be open until May 31. That program allows people to apply to drive Denali’s entire park road on a predetermined day and time.

The national park estimates that applicants have roughly one in seven chances of being selected based on data from past years, which show an average of 13,000 applications submitted annually.

To participate in the program, people must submit an application along with the $15 application fee, pay a $25 road permit fee if they are selected and then pay the $15 park entrance fee.

Dates offered during the 2021 lottery include Sept. 17, 19, 20 and 21. Sept. 18 is Military Appreciation Day, which is only open to active-duty military service members and their families. Applicants are able to arrange the available dates in order of preference when applying. Winners will be selected in the summer.

People can submit their road lottery application starting on Saturday by visiting recreation.gov. More information about Denali’s 2021 Road Lottery can be found at nps.gov/dena/planyourvisit/road-lottery.htm.

Reach reporter Ashlyn O’Hara at ashlyn.ohara@peninsulaclarion.com.

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