Yum Hey What's for Dinner Mom?: The Penny Worthy Project


The Penny Worthy Project

The off season, post tourist season is the way to see Alaska. The light is amazing, the views spectacular and best of all the state is mostly our own. I don't mind tourists, they are great for the economy and I'm glad they come to see the wonders of our state but Alaska is mostly empty in September and I like it that way.

My uncle received a pass to drive in to Denali National Park to the end of the road. This is a road that only park buses get to travel on all summer. In June you can apply for a pass and they randomly draw winners to drive in after the summer is over. My uncle was unable to go this year so he gifted it to my mother. Her husband was having some pretty serious back surgery and they were unable to go. She gave the pass to me. My husband was scheduled to be out of town so I was on my own.

I invited a friend to go with me and she had the brilliant idea of renting a DNR cabin for the night so we could go cheaply and still have fun. 4 kids two adults in a 12X16 cabin was a squeeze but the place was beautiful and the price was right. I think I proved my motto "unfit to camp at any time" as we spent the night in fits and starts and my temper MIGHT have flared. But still we had a blast and it was affordable. 

DNR Cabin Byers Lake
Byers Lake
We drove on to Denali National Park after spending the night at our lovely cabin in Denali State Park. Our first sighting in the park was a moose. I think my friend is laughing because at home we would be mad to see a moose at this time of year, because they come to eat your garden. Here we were all excited.

 porcupine bum

just lovely
We stopped to see Dall Sheep and when we looked down we saw wet wolf tracks coming from a stream and scampering right in front of our truck. WOW!

Dall Sheep

made it in

leaving Wonder Lake

Toklat River

Grizzly Bear smack dab in the middle of the picture about 50 feet up the mountain above the road

I think our final count was 5 grizzly bears, 1 porcupine, 3 moose, 9 Dall sheep, 19 wolves, 3 bunnies, 2 jays, 2 "I'm gonna throw up"s and countless "don't make me come back there" Everyone lived through it and already has fond memories of the trip. My son even knocked out a loose tooth trying to shove his head out the window to see the wolves. We, of course, have labeled this tale "when the wolf pack knocked his tooth out", now that's a story!

Peace and Love--


  1. Wow - is all I can say. What beautiful pictures. And that cabin??? Adorable!

  2. You gotta watch those wolves, they really do dig teeth...hehe.

  3. Gorgeous photos, cute cabin, sounds like a sublime adventure. Thanks for being thoughtful enough to share it with us!


Am I talking DIRECTLY to you? Well then let me know!