Compendiums for Alaska

close up of a hand filling out a registration form
A visitor provides backcountry trip information. NPS Photo/Kent Miller

What is a compendium?

A compendium is a written compilation of designations, closures, permit requirements and other authorizations and restrictions adopted under discretionary authority found in the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR). Regulations for national parks are in 36 CFR and 43 CFR. For example, 36 CFR Section 2.21 (a) states, "The superintendent may designate a portion of a park area, or all or a portion of a building, structure or facility as closed to smoking when necessary to protect park resources, reduce the risk of fire, or prevent conflicts among visitor use activities." This designation is placed into the park's compendium.

Compendiums have always been a tool to help manage Alaska's national parks. The compendium, as part of the park-related regulations, helps provide for the enjoyment, use and protection of our national parks.

Why is there a need for public involvement?

Public involvement improves the compendium development process by giving the National Park Service (NPS) the opportunity to be responsive to the public's ideas and concerns, to involve the public cooperatively in generating alternatives and to educate the public about the compendium. The result is a better compendium that benefits both the park and the various publics that use the park.

How often is a compendium revised?

A compendium is reviewed at least annually to determine if updates are necessary. Depending on events and issues, it may be updated more frequently. In some cases, a review may indicate that no changes are needed.

When is the compendium comment period open?


Park managers considering changes to public uses will publish those proposed changes early in the calendar year.  NPS will issue a press release when the comment period is open. Information regarding proposed changes, the dates for the public comment period, and how to submit a comment are located on the proposed compendiums webpage.

Are the parks' current compendiums available?

Current park compendiums can be found on the current compendiums webpage.

How can I view and comment on the proposed changes?

The proposed changes can be viewed during the comment period. Information on how to view and comment is available on the proposed compendium webpage.

The National Park Service is committed to making all practicable efforts to make the park compendiums accessible and usable by all individuals. If you require assistance please call 907-644-3510.

What will happen to my comment?

Comments NPS receives from the public will be considered by each park in the annual update of its compendium. It should be remembered that the information received only represents the people who responded. Also, public involvement is not a voting process. The results of the public comments will be used, along with the analysis of other information and data gathered, including input from the State of Alaska, to complete the compendium. Commenting is your opportunity to influence the management of the national parks in Alaska. Comments will be addressed and posted online.

Last updated: January 12, 2021