Alaska's name comes from the Aleut word for "Great Land" -- a fitting description for this land of dramatic mountains, rivers, and glaciers. What is it like on America's Last Frontier?
Mt. McKinley, also called Denali, is the largest mountain in North America. See some other sites of Denali National Park in the next picture.
Reflection Pond and Primrose Ridge are two breathtaking wonders in Denali National Park.
If you take the Glenn Highway thru Alaska, you can stop by to absorb the beauty of Long Lake. Take a gander from another scenic route in the next photo.
Turnagain Pass stretches out to the the Chugach mountains along the Seward Highway. The next photo shows what it's like on those frosty peaks.
The sun greets a climber on one of Alaska's snow-covered mountains. Alaska's arctic regions are a challenge to navigate. See how some trekkers make it on foot in the next photo.
This trekker uses a sled to help tote his equipment through northern Alaska's frozen coastal areas. See some of the wildlife of this region in the next photo.
This photo shows a Porcupine caribou herd (Rangifer tarandus) migrating in winter. Northern Alaska is home to these animals and wonders like the Columbia Glacier in the next photo.
The Columbia Glacier in Alaska has retreated 9 miles since 1982. The face of the glacier is 320 feet high and the depth of the water is 900 feet. The glacier has lost about half of its height since 1982, one of the effects of a warming planet.
The region now known as Wrangell-St. Elias National Park was a hot-spot for prospectors during the Alaska gold rush. See some native artifacts from before the prospectors arrived in the next photo.
These totems are part of a set of more than 20 ornately carved and painted poles on display at Saxman Native Totem Park. The next photo shows just one of the ways to get outdoors in Alaska.
Alaska has some of the most challenging peaks in North America. After a long day on the rock, what better reward than a night-time show? See the aurora borealis at night in the next photo.
This boreal forest is silhouetted by a red-tinted aurora borealis in the night sky of Alaska. The aurora is usually most visible in the fall and winter months.
At the northernmost end of the Pacific Coast Range lie Alaska's Chugach Mountains. Heavy snowfall is common here, due to their location near the Gulf of Alaska.
Hubbard Glacier, in Glacier Bay National Park and Preserve, was named after the first president of the National Geographic Society, Gardiner G. Hubbard. This incredible ice flow stretches for more than 70 miles from source to sea.
You can find some of the biggest grizzly bears in Alaska, where they chow down on a steady diet of berries, tubers, nuts and of course, salmon.
Mt. Drum is a long-dormant volcano that stands out sharply above the surrounding river valley, although even its height is surpassed by some of its neighbors in the nearby Wrangell Mountains.
The Inside Passage is a popular route for everything from cruise ships and kayakers to freighters and fishermen. The many islands provide protection from the rough weather of the Pacific Ocean, in addition incredible scenery.
Denali National Park offers over six million acres of wilderness in the center of the state, with features like the scary-sounding Fang Mountain.
A dogsledder and his dogs glide through the Arctic National Park in Alaska.
Two people hike on a glacier in the Chilkat Mountains in Alaska.
Frigid air boils a scorching exhaust from a north slope oil facility in Alaska.
The Aurora Borealis (Northern Lights) hovers over winter's snow-covered mountains.
The sun peeks over Denali National Park's Mount McKinley in Alaska.
A worker walks on heating pipes at an oil processing plant near Prudhoe Bay, Alaska.
This hiker seems to be on top of the world in Alaska's Arctic Wildlife Refuge.
A visibly chilly man pauses under a thermometer registering 43 degrees below zero.
An F-15 Eagle aircraft from the 65th Aggressor Squadron flies over the Pacific Alaskan Range Complex.
A woman skis in Valdez, Alaska.
A group of musk ox huddle on the Arctic Slope.
Campers settle on a glacier in Chugach National Park, Alaska.
Workers lay down cable for acoustical emitters on the frozen surface of the Beaufort Sea.
A snowy Mount McKinley overlooks blooming flowers in Denali National Park, Alaska.
Kayaks sit by a river in Alaska.
A bald eagle perches in a snow-covered tree in Haines, Alaska.
An Inuit man collects blubber from a butchered whale in Barrow, Alaska.
Just another beautiful summer day in Alaska.