Subsistence and Traditional Use of the Land
NPS Photo / Karen Gaul
Alaska's abundance of natural resources form the backbone of life and economy of many people of Alaska.
Today, as in the past, many Alaskans live off the land, relying on fish, wildlife and other wild resources. Alaska Natives have used these subsistence resources for food, shelter, clothing, transportation, handicrafts and trade for thousands of years. Subsistence, and all it entails, is critical to sustaining both the physical and spiritual culture of Alaska Native peoples. It is an important tradition for many non-Natives as well.
Lake Clark National Park & Preserve was created in 1980 by the Alaska National Interest Lands Conservation Act (ANILCA), which also provided for continued subsistence use of the park by local residents. Today many people continue to use the area's rich resources in a traditional way.
ANILCA stipulates that local rural people may continue subsistence practices on federal lands, including the park and preserve. Subsistence Resource Councils made up of local residents advises National Park Service staff on policy development and implementation.