Research and Monitoring

The 1916 Organic Act, which created the National Park Service, requires parks "to conserve the scenery and the natural and historic objects and the wild life therein." A comprehensive program of scientific research and monitoring is required to ensure that Lake Clark's natural and cultural resources are protected. Some of these studies are focused on specific resource concerns while other studies are broader in nature and intended to better understand the complex ecosystems of this large wilderness park.

Woman holding a large antenna sits in a boat on a lake surrounded by colorful mountains.
Quality research and monitoring is essential for making informed management decisions in our National Parks.

NPS Photo

Woman on hands and knees carefully scrapes through archeology site with tools.
A researcher at an archeology site.

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Cultural Resources Research

Cultural anthropologists and historians identify, document, and interpret ethnographic resources. Recent projects in the park include:

A researcher looks closely at a yellow flower with a magnifying glass.
Botanists are among the many scientists studying the natural world in Lake Clark.

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Natural Resources Research

Geologists, botanists, fisheries and wildlife biologists, and other scientists conduct research that assists park managers make informed decisions. Learn more about recent projects:

A metal container with an antenna and other equipment sits on a mountainside overlooking a lake and distant snowy mountains.
Several SWAN weather stations around the park collect data year-round.

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Long-term Ecological Monitoring

The Southwest Alaska Inventory and Monitoring Network (SWAN) is one of 32 networks across the United States that furthers the National Park Service's strategy to improve park management through greater reliance on scientific information. The SWAN establishes and provides long-term ecological monitoring of a variety of natural vital signs.

man in an orange rain coat sets up a computer and other equipment outdoors

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NPS Data Store

The Integrated Resource Management Application, more commonly known as IRMA, is the National Park Service-wide repository for documents, publications, and data sets that are related to National Park Service natural and cultural resources. To search for Lake Clark specific documents check "filter by NPS units" and select Lake Clark National Park and Preserve.

cover of a journal showing orange flowers and the words Alaska Park Science

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Alaska Park Science

Alaska Park Science is a semi-annual journal that shares what we are learning in Alaska's national parks through the study of their vital cultural and natural resources. Browse Alaska Park Science issues about Lake Clark.

man kneels on small boulder in shallow, clear water with tools to collect a lichen sample.
Biologist collects a lichen sample.

NPS photo / James Walton

Information for Researchers

Lake Clark offers exceptional research opportunities for scientists from other agencies and institutions. Information on study permit requirements are available at:

Information for Researchers

Last updated: September 8, 2016

Contact the Park

Mailing Address:

PO Box 227
Port Alsworth, AK 99653


(907) 644-3626

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