• Image of mountains and river

    Gates Of The Arctic

    National Park & Preserve Alaska

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  • Emergency Sheep Hunting Closure in Units 23 & 26(A)

    All sheep seasons in Game Management Units 23 and 26(A) for all resident and nonresident hunters are closed due to severe decline in sheep numbers in the contiguous populations of the De Long and Schwatka Mountains. More »

Plan Your Visit

Scenic view of mountains and a river in the Oolah Valley in summer.
Penny Knuckles, NPS

Gates of the Arctic National Park and Preserve is a vast and essentially untouched wilderness park – with no roads, no trails, and no established campsites. The park has no set routes in place and visitors may wander at will across 8.4 million acres of superlative natural beauty. This is a place for discovery and exploration.

There are no established services within the park boundaries and only limited means of communication work effectively to contact anyone for assistance. Cell phones don’t work here.

Visitors to the park should be PROFICIENT in outdoor survival skills, and be prepared to care for their own life and their partner(s) if an emergency arises.

The terrain is challenging: there are no established trails and the dense vegetation, tussocks, boggy ground, and frequent stream and river crossings can significantly slow progress across the landscape . Experienced hikers consider six miles a good day’s travel in Gates of the Arctic National Park and Preserve.

If visitors are not proficient in wilderness back country skills, we recommend that they contact an outfitter, guide service, or air taxi operator for assistance.

For those visitors who don’t have the time, or the backcountry skills to mount an expedition into the park, there are other options. Local air taxis provide flight-seeing trips, day trips or overnight camp outs at remote locations. Imagine a day spent fishing at an alpine lake, or watching the caribou up in the northern valleys, or sitting alongside a wild river listening to the wind in the boreal forest. Air taxis will also take visitors into neighboring Kobuk Valley National Park to get their passport stamp.

Whatever trip option you choose, be prepared for the experience of a lifetime.


Did You Know?

Person paddling down the Noatak River.

The Noatak drainage that begins in Gates of the Arctic National Park and Preserve and continues through the Noatak Preserve is an internationally recognized biosphere reserve.