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14 April, 2002

Weather: Partly Cloudy, Snow
High 35
Low 15

What Did I Do on My Spring Vacation?

As you can see, the weather was pretty warm today with mostly sun but odd to say, we had snow most of the day. I spent the day working on my journals, data calculations, and preparing for field works this Tuesday.

I get the Fairbanks Daily News-Miner newspaper to catch the daily highlights of Fairbanks. In today's section on the front page was an arcticle on the Denali pack wolves. Denali (also known as Mt. McKinley) is the highest peak in the Americas. Wolves in the Denali Park have an average life expectancy of three years. Approximately

25 wolves die each year from drowning in rivers, moose attacks, starvation, and avalanche accidents. Other Denali Park wolves kill about half of the estimated deaths. "You might say, it's a wolf-eat-wolf world." At the Denali National Park, there is a wolf-viewing program for tourists, which brings in millions of dollars. The Sanctuary Pack near the East Fork, was the one of two packs viewed by tourists in this program. Unfortunately, the Sanctuary Pack is now wiped out. A moose killed the alpha male and the alpha female was killed after being tranquilized for research.

Two pups disappeared and one was caught in a trap. A new pack is currently picking up the trail. The park superintendent denies wolf decline or human disturbance from the wolf-viewing program. Wolves are still disappearing every year and animal activists still protest wolf viewing in the Park.

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