Things To Do
Rafting, camping, hiking, backpacking, wildlife watching, photography, hunting and fishing opportunities abound three season of the year. With winter arctic survival skills and personal equipment, snow machining, skiing and dog mushing is also possible. Community programs are available in the summer at the Northwest Arctic Heritage Center. Topics include natural and cultural history of the preserve, local research, local crafts and children’s activities. Schedules vary, so please call 907.442.3890 before your arrival to learn about upcoming programs.
There are no developed facilities in Noatak National Preserve. Access in summer is by plane or boat. Winter access is by plane or snow machine. Summer hikes in the Brooks Mountain Range are popular, especially along ridgelines where walking is easier than on the lower level tundra. Rafting the 400- mile Noatak River is a great way to experience the preserve. Private land can be found along the river, so please detour around areas that show any signs of ownership. Hunters and anglers are required to follow Alaska state regulations, which are available at www.adfg.state.ak.us. Remember to pack warm clothing, as prevailing westerly winds may drop wind chill factors below freezing, even in summer.
Small planes may be chartered from Kotzebue or Bettles to land in the national preserve, or to fly over the area for a view of the mountains and wildlife.
Did You Know?
Approximately 90% (5.8 million acres) of Noatak National Preserve is designated wilderness, making it the fourth largest wilderness in the United States. It is the largest area with an indigenous name.