Land of Extremes

The Arctic is the northernmost region of Earth. It is a fascinating natural and cultural landscape adapted to extreme conditions. Alaska has the only Arctic parks in the National Park System, and together, those parks make up more than a quarter of the total amount of land managed by the National Park Service. The boundary of the Arctic is the Arctic Circle, an imaginary line around the Earth (at about 66.5° North Latitude) where, for at least one day each year, the sun does not completely set (June 21) or rise (December 22). Explore this site to learn more about the rich natural and cultural heritage of the Arctic.

Colorful flags mark archaeological sites along a steep bank in the Brooks Range.
Arctic Archaeology

Archaeology in the Arctic reveals cultures adapted to local conditions.

A white snowshoe hare blends in to the snow.

Wildlife in the Arctic are particularly adapted for the climate and environment.

Caribou migration across a snowy valley.
Science in Alaska's Arctic Parks

The Arctic is a region characterized by extremes and adaptation; it is rich in natural and cultural history.

The colorful mountains of the Brooks Range in Noatak National Preserve.

Alaska is one of the few places in the United States that has large, intact natural landscapes, this is particularly true in the Arctic.

A woman ice fishing in traditional Arctic clothing.

Subsistence is a way of life, it links people, culture, and the natural environment.

Pack rafters go down whitewater in the Brooks Range.
Wild and Scenic Rivers

Experience wild and scenic rivers.

Last updated: June 27, 2019