Denali National Park Road Lottery in 2011 - Photo by NPSThe Park Service issues one permit coveted by Alaskans to winners of the Denali National Park Road Lottery. Every fall, on the weekend after Labor Day, the Denali Park Road is opened four days to travel by winners of their road lottery.

These winners are issued a rare one-day permit to drive the road for as far as the weather will allow. Depending on seasonal snowfall, drives may range from Savage River at Mile 1 to Wonder Lake at Mile 85. Routine travel in the park with personal vehicles is prohibited and visitors must use buses operated by a concessioner. The one-day permit runs from 0600 to 2400 hours on the day selected.

This year’s lottery dates are September 13 to 16, 2013. The application period for the 2013 lottery is May 1 – June 30, 2013. Applications can be made online at or by calling 877.444.6777. It cost $10 to apply for a permit. Lottery winners will be charged $25 for their transferable permit and will receive notification by email. Winners of the lottery are also announced on the Denali Park website devoted to the lottery in July of 2013.

Answers to frequently asked questions and details about the road lottery are posted online. The website answers questions about camping locations, vehicle lengths and check-in procedures. Mark the calendar for May 1 and take your chances with the Park Service this year.

Copyright © 2013 by Alan Sorum

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