• Photo of touchable historic three-dimensional map at the Alaska public lands information Center

    Alaska Public Lands

    Alaska

Frequently Asked Questions About Outdoor Recreation

 
  1. We want to go day hiking close by, where can we go?If near Anchorage, Chugach State Park provides a wide variety of choices. The Park's Ridgelines newspaper details distances, difficulty and trailhead locations. Also, Anchorage Municipality Parks and Recreation offers something for everyone right here in town, from paved walkways to undeveloped trails!

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  1. We want to do a backpack trip with trails. Where can we go?Most hiking in Alaska is without trails, but most state parks, national forests, a few national parks and BLM lands will have maintained trails. Locally, Chugach National Forest provides maintained trial hiking on the Kenai Peninsula (a trail listing is available). The Alaska State Park system also has maintained trails (trail descriptions for Chugach State Park are found in the Ridgelines newspaper).

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  1. We want to do a backpack trip without trails. Where can we go?To almost any public lands area in Alaska! National parks, state parks, national forests and BLM land all provide "trail-less" hiking. Some popular destinations: Wrangell-St. Elias NP, Gates of the Arctic NP, any Brooks Range area, numerous areas in Southeast Alaska, and the Aleutian Range. Brochures with hiking suggestions and contact phone numbers/addresses are available.

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Mount Drum is one of the highest peaks in Alaska

Mt. Drum
(NPS Photo)

  1. Where can we mountain bike in the mountains? City? Trails?
    APLIC has a notebook file describing mountain biking areas in the Chugach National Forest. The Ridgelines newspaper describes areas within Chugach State Park. A Mountain Biking on Public Lands flyer details state and federal lands where mountain biking is and is not allowed. Anchorage biking trail guides are available from Alaska Natural History Association (ANHA) and even listed in the local phone book.

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  1. We want to rent a public use cabin. Where can I find information about rentals?The Anchorage Alaska Public Lands Information Centers rents public use cabins for the Kenai Fjords National Park.. Information is also available for Tongass and Chugach National Forests, Alaska State Parks, Bureau of Land Management, Fish & Wildlife Service and National Park Service cabins. For general information, check our Cabin Information Page.

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  1. Where can we go fishing? Who can help us with gear, supplies, licenses? What about regulations? Are there any good books about local fishing? I HAVE to catch a salmon/halibut before I go home!Alaska Public Lands Information Centers can provide you with regulations for any area in Alaska. Including general brochures and fliers on which fish are where and when, specific area fish guides, outfitter-guide lists and directions to any local sporting goods store for gear and licenses. Also available throughout the summer is a weekly update on fishing conditions. Depending on Alaska Public Lands Information Centers staffing, visitors might even find an avid fisherman behind the desk who can answer their questions.

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  1. Can I fish in Denali National Park? Yes, but you might prefer other places. Fishing isn't great because the fish can't tolerate the conditions of most rivers inside the park...too much glacial silt. There are a few clear mountain streams where arctic grayling may be caught. Lake trout may be found in Wonder Lake. No license is required in the original Park. A state license is needed for the 1980 park additions and the Denali National Preserve.

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  1. We came to kayak/canoe. Where can we find information?Alaska Public Lands Information Centers has a flyer detailing popular canoeing and kayaking areas. For example, Kenai Fjords National Park provides excellent kayaking. Resources are available for rentals and tours. Canoeing is popular in the Nancy Lakes State Recreation Area and Kenai National Wildlife Refuge. Brochures are available for both areas.

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  1. Where can I learn how to be safe around bears, moose and other animals? Most of what you need, you already have...common sense. Keep your distance, let them know you are there, and don't run in panic. Bear Facts is a good brochure to review. Many public lands brochures discuss how to safely enjoy Alaska's wildlife.

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  1. We want to hunt in Alaska. Can you send information?Alaska Public Lands Information Centers can send you hunting regulations and outfitter-guide lists. For lodging and related services, various Chambers of Commerce or Alaska Division of Tourism phone numbers and addresses might be useful.

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  1. We backpack and camp regularly in California.What can you tell us about minimum impact and safe camping/backpacking in Alaska?We have minimum impact camping/backpacking brochures covering water safety, clothing, gear, and general trip planning. Some of the differences between California and Alaska involve lower summer temperatures, more moisture, and a greater potential for wildlife contacts.

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  1. I'm a cross-country skier, where can I ski? Also, can you tell me what skijoring is? Cross-country skiing is as unrestricted on public lands as hiking. Popular areas are too numerous to mention here. As always, there are areas with avalanche danger. Alaska Public Lands Information Centers can help you access information on winter skiing and recorded ski hotlines for many public lands. Anchorage has numerous groomed trails to enjoy and several chalets. Contact Anchorage Parks & Recreation for more information. Also, the Nordic Ski Club of Anchorage has a ski hotline, 248-6667, the club number is 561-0949. Skijoring is a delightful winter sport combining cross-country skiing and running your dog! Local enthusiasts enjoy the sport at Centennial Park, Connors Lake, Far North Bicentennial Park Trail, Chester Creek Trail and the Coastal Trail. Contact the Anchorage Parks & Recreation Department for more information at 343- 4474. There is a skijoring club in Anchorage: North American Skijoring & Ski Pulk Association (NASSPA).

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  1. Can I get information on dog-mushing and where I can do it? Dog-mushing is a major Alaskan sport and involves anything from a weekend jaunt to the Iditarod. Dog-mushing on public lands is unrestricted other than required overnight permits (free) in parks such as Denali National Park.

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  1. Where can we snowmachine on public lands?Though it is a major sport and form of transportation in Alaska, there are some restrictions on public lands. Contact Alaska Public Lands Information Centers for individual park or area limitations. Some areas restrict use to certain areas or trails, others to certain times of the year based on snow coverage, a few prohibit snowmachine use altogether.

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Did You Know?

Did You Know?

Homesteading was allowed until 1995, any Alaska resident of at least one year, 18 years or older and a U.S. citizen, had a chance to receive up to 40 acres of nonagricultural land or up to 160 acres of agricultural land nearly free.