Gates Of The Arctic National Park & Preserve


Gates of the Arctic is one of the last truly wild places on earth. It is a remote wilderness area located above the Arctic Circle and far from any roads. Essentially untouched, it's an area of superlative natural beauty and exceptional scientific value with a maze of glaciated valleys and gaunt, rugged mountains covered with boreal forest and arctic tundra vegetation, cut by wild rivers, and inhabited by far-ranging populations of caribou, Dall sheep, wolves, and bears (barren-ground grizzlies and black bears). The National Park Service is entrusted to manage this area to protect its physical resources and to maintain the intangible qualities of the wilderness and the opportunity it provides for people to learn and renew its values.



Seasonality / Weather

The central Brooks Range has long, severe winters and relatively short summers. During the winter, long nights prevail, while the summer has thirty days of continuous sunlight. Visitors traveling in the park move through a variety of climatic zones and experience highly variable and unpredictable weather. Snow can fall during any month of the year.



It is not possible to drive into the park.


From Fairbanks proceed by air to one of the jump-off communities. Some popular entry points are Bettles, Coldfoot, Anaktuvuk Pass and Kotzebue; or by vehicle along the Dalton Highway Corridor. Commercial air service is available from Fairbanks to Bettles, Anaktuvuk Pass and Kotzebue. You will have to travel by air because there are no roads to these communities.

From Bettles, Coldfoot, and Kotzebue arrange to fly into the Park and Preserve with an air taxi service. Your destination in the Park and Preserve determines which community from which you will leave. Please call an air taxi service for specific price information.

From the Dalton Highway you can drive to Coldfoot and fly into the Park and Preserve via air charter. Those seeking a rugged wilderness journey on a limited budget can begin hiking directly off the highway.