Cartographers: Denali Shorter Than You Thought

Denali (20,237 feet). Wikipedia photo.

Denali (20,237 feet). Wikipedia photo.

9/13/13 - North America's highest peak is 83 feet shorter than previously thought. That's the word from Alaska's lieutenant governor, Mead Treadwell, who said this week that new data show Denali (aka Mt. McKinley) stands at 20,237 feet, versus the previously accepted figure of 20,320 feet. The 20,320 foot figure dates from 1952.

"The 2012 revision of 20,237 feet was recorded with radar technology deployed as a result of Alaska’s Statewide Digital Mapping Initiative (SDMI), which also revealed that an entire ridge line of Mt. Dickey in Denali National Park was missing from previous maps—one of many discrepancies corrected by recent map updates," a press statement from Treadwell's office said.

The new mapping initiative, jointly funded by the state of Alaska and the federal government, is designed to provide the first new statewide set of maps and elevations for Alaska in nearly 50 years. The project is slated for completion in 2016.

"U.S. Secretary of Interior Sally Jewell announced last week that the USGS has produced 400 new Alaska topographical maps, which are now available for public download," Treadwell's office said. "Altogether, the USGS project will produce more than 11,000 new maps covering the entire state."

Date: September 11, 2013

Source: Alaska Lieutenant Governor's Office