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Gates of the Arctic National Park & Preserve Fees & Reservations

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English: Arrigetch Peaks Gates of the Arctic N...

English: Arrigetch Peaks Gates of the Arctic National Park (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

At the Gates of the Arctic National Park & Preserve there are currently no fees, and you don’t have to make any reservations at all. There’s plenty of room for all.

Camping at the Gates of the Arctic National Park & Preserve

There are no campgrounds or designated campsites in the park. Camping is usually enjoyed combined with other activities. If you want to camp in the Gates of the Arctic National Park & Preserve you must realize that it takes lots of planning, lots of preparation plus you’ve gotta’ make sure that you keep yourself safe whilst not damaging the very fragile ecosystem of the park.

Choosing a Back Country Camping Site

When choosing your wilderness camping site you do have to take many things into account. Seasoned visitors to the Gates of the Arctic National Park & Preserve should already be aware that the arctic tundra is extremely fragile and takes a long time to recover. That’s why it’s always best to choose a camping site on durable surfaces like gravel bars, plus a bout of high water will soon wipe out any sign that you were even there. You do need to remember that water levels can rise very quickly, at any time so it’s always a good idea to pitch your campsite well above the current levels. If you want to camp on a vegetated campsite then try to select one with relatively hardy vegetation like sedges and grasses instead of the fragile areas of mosses and lichens. Moving campsite every couple of days is another way in which you can help to protect the ecosystem, plus if you wear lighter soled shoes around the campsite area the impact of your presence will be lessened.

Setting Up A Wilderness Campsite in Gates of the Arctic National Park & Preserve

Remember that you’ve got to bring everything you need with you for a camping trip to the Gates of the Arctic National Park & Preserve, and that means everything. Remember that the park is in bear country, so you should make sure that your cooking and eating area is well away from your sleeping area – at least 100 yards is the recommended distance. You should also remember to stash any food and fragrance items (toothpaste, lotions etc) plus scraps of trash in a separate area. Make sure that before you leave your campsite you’ve returned everything to how it was before you arrived – leave no trace is a very important code to live by when hiking and camping in such a fragile area.

You should take a gas or propane stove with you to do your cooking. It’s often impractical to light a fire, wood is scarce or non existent and trees grow very slowly in arctic conditions. Gas and propane cooking stoves are also easy to light. Make sure that you tidy up any food spills and that your food is stored in bear proof containers. If bears are allowed to get used to eating human food and garbage then they’ll keep on coming back for more. That’s not good for the humans, and it’s certainly not good for the bears. If bears become a threat to humans they might even be killed which is just one reason why it’s illegal to food bears within the park, and that doesn’t necessarily mean feeding the  bears on purpose. It also means being careless and leaving food or scraps where the bears can get to them.  If you’re planning a camping trip to Gates of the Alaska National Park & Preserve then you do need to take some bear resistant food containers with you . . . it’s really the only answer.

What truly magnificent country.

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