The highest Mountain Peak in North America. The third most prominent peak in the world. The mountain named after U.S. President William McKinley. Well, not anymore.
Over 20,000 feet tall, the climbing of Mount McKinley (Or Denali, as it is now called) is a daunting and dangerous goal accomplished by none until the early 20th century. The first record of it existing was in 1794, but it was not successfully climbed until 1913, when Hudson Stuck, Harry Karstens, Walter Harper, and Robert Tatum finally reached the top by the south Summit. In 1951, Bradford Washburn pioneered a new route, considered the safest way up, and most climbers go by that route. Denali is the centerpiece of Denali National Park and Reserve in Alaska, and is a very popular tourist destination.
Since 1975, there has been a dispute about what the mountain should be called: Mount McKinley, named after President William McKinley and the name used since 1917, or Denali, the name given by the Koyukon Athabaskan people of Alaska. Yesterday, President Barrack Obama signed an executive order officially renaming Mount McKinley Denali.
This Mountain, no matter what it’s called, is a very important reminder of the effort those who climbed it gave, and it will always be remembered for what it truly is: an American Masterpiece.