Located in the central part of the icy continent in Alaska USA, majestic Mount McKinley is the highest within the United States and across North America in general. With its record height of 6193 meters, McKinley is one of the challenges for ice climbers and mountaineers, and is considered one of the four polar champions. The other three are Greenland, Antarctica and the North Pole.
McKinley is located in the northern Cordillera mountains in the territory of the 49 th U.S. state of Alaska. This giant peak is named in honor of the 25th U.S. president, but for residents of Indian tribes who inhabit the area, McKinley is known as Dinale or Denali. It is located within the Denali National Park.
In translation from Indian, Denali means "high". This giant snow top is often shrouded in dense clouds, located near the landmark park - Wonder Lake. Judging by its name we can guess how beautiful and seemingly touched by God is the water basin. In its waters beautifully reflects the posture of McKinley.
Mount McKinley powerfully hangs over the mountain ridge. It is massive, has a larger volume and steeper hills than Mount Everest, although Everest is higher (8848 meters). For the first time it is marked on maps under the Governor of Alaska, while it was under Russian occupation, by the eminent scientist and explorer Ferdinand Petrovich Wrangel. The very name McKinley was proposed in 1896 by a young and ambitious prospector William Dicke. He stated it as the highest peak in America and offered for it to be called after the newly elected president William McKinley of the United States.
Europeans focus their attention on McKinley for the first time in the month of May 1794 then the investigator George Vancouver carried out studies in this area. In the early 19th century Russian explorers and travelers provide more information and facts about the geography of the region, among them Ferdinand von Wrangell), and Lavrenty Zagoskin. Lavrenty is considered the first European to see the summit from the north side.
The first known attempt to climb McKinley was registered in 1903, by a group led by Judge James Wickersham, which heads along the Peters Glacier, to the north side of McKinley. This route is quite dangerous because there often are avalanches and the attempt to conquer the giant was unsuccessful.
Joy for mountaineering circles came 60 years later, when the northern wall of McKinley was conquered. Even after the first few attempts ended with partial success. In 1910, they had climbed the north peak, which is slightly lower than the south, and in 1912 bad weather caused climbers to return 100 meters before reaching the highest point of McKinley.
In 1913 at the base of McKinley came a group led by Reverend Hudson Stuck. They took a route through Muldrow Glacier, and had already explored the territory of previous expeditions. On June. 7 three people, Native Alaskan Walter Harper, Harry Karstens and Robert Tatum reached the main (southern) peak. After returning Tatum utters the words: "To look from the top of McKinley's like to look through the windows of Heaven."
The first declared to have climbed the 6194 m high peak in 1906, is world-renowned polar explorer Frederick Albert Cook. However, specialists are challenging his achievement and accept that the first official ascent of McKinley was in 1913 by Hudson Stuck.