Kobuk Valley National Park is a remote hidden gem tucked away in northwest Alaska. Established in 1980, it encompasses nearly 1.7 million acres of wilderness and unique landscapes. It is a part of the larger Selawik National Wildlife Refuge, which is managed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
Kobuk Valley is located in the northwestern corner of the state and is home to three distinct ecosystems: tundra, mountains and boreal forest. The park has soaring mountains, dramatic glacial valleys, enormous sand dunes and wild rivers.
The Kobuk River flows through the center of the park, passing by the Great Kobuk Sand Dunes. These massive sand dunes are some of the largest in the world and can be explored with four-wheel drive vehicles. The park’s most notable attraction is The Great Kobuk Sand Dunes National Natural Landmark, which reaches heights of up to 100 feet.
Kobuk Valley National Park has a wide variety of incredible wildlife and is a key summer destination for Dall sheep, caribou and grizzly bears. Other great animal sightseeing opportunities in the park include Arctic fox, red fox, moose, wolves, bald eagles and over 50 species of migratory birds.
The park is a haven for outdoor adventurers and offers many recreational activities, such as camping, hiking, backpacking and canoeing. Fishing and hunting are also allowed with a valid Alaska State license.
Kobuk Valley National Park is an incredible piece of the Last Frontier and a must-see for any true Alaskan adventure. Its location off the beaten path allows for a truly unique experience, one that is sure to leave a lasting impression for life.
Photos of Kobuk Valley National Park
16Terezka, CC BY-SA 3.0
Education Specialist, CC BY 2.0
Western Arctic National Parklands, CC BY 2.0
LCGS Russ, CC BY-SA 3.0
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) about Kobuk Valley National Park
How to get to Kobuk Valley National Park?
The park has no roads or trails and can only be accessed via floatplane or boat. Access to the park is limited in winter due to poor snow conditions and cannot be reached by car. For more information on planning a visit to Kobuk Valley National Park, please visit their website at https://www.nps.gov/kova/planyourvisit/index.htm.
Where is Kobuk Valley National Park located?
Kobuk Valley National Park is located in the northwestern corner of Alaska, near the Arctic Circle, approximately 217 miles northwest of Fairbanks and 45 miles east of Kotzebue. It is approximately 175 miles southeast of Barrow and 510 miles northwest of Anchorage.
What is Kobuk Valley National Park known for?
Kobuk Valley National Park is known for its spectacular sand dunes, pristine tundra, and diverse wildlife such as caribou, grizzly bear, moose, and wolves. It is also noted for its amazing cultural and archaeological sites, including the Onion Portage Archeological District which is listed in the National Register of Historic Places.