For today's edition of Sky Watch Friday, which begins on Thursday in my part of the world, I submit a photo taken back in September of 2001. While my wife and I were on vacation up in Alaska I took this photo of Denali, otherwise known as Mount McKinley.
Denali, in the language of the Native Americans, Athabascan, living in the region, means "The High One". Denali was so named because it is the largest mountain in the world. Although the peak of Mount Everest is about 9000 feet higher then sea level then Denali is it sits on the Tibetan Plateau which is about 17,000 feet above sea level. So the actual height of Everest, from the base of the mountain to the peak, is about 12,000 feet. Denali sits on a plateau that is only about 2000 feet above sea level which means its height, from the base to the peak, is actually around 18,000. In 1917 the mountain, along with millions of surrounding acres, became a game refuge named after Senator and President William McKinley. In 1980 the Alaska National Interest Land Conservation Act added another 4 million and redesignated the Park from Mount McKinley National Park to Denali National Park and Preserve. Even though the federal government, through the US Board on Geographic Names, considers the mountain as Mount McKinley, the State of Alaska, as well as many people who visit this awesome mountain, recognize it as its original name Denali.