Kobuk Valley National Park

Kobuk Valley National Park

Infobox_protected_area | name = Kobuk Valley National Park
iucn_category = II

caption =
locator_x = 29
locator_y = 142
location = Northwest Arctic Borough, Alaska, USA
nearest_city = Fairbanks
lat_degrees = 67
lat_minutes = 33
lat_seconds = 0
lat_direction = N
long_degrees = 159
long_minutes = 17
long_seconds = 0
long_direction = W
area = convert|1669813|acre|km2|2|lk=on
established = December 2, 1980
visitation_num = 847 [http://www.nps.gov/ National Park Service] - [http://www2.nature.nps.gov/stats/ Public Use Statistics Office] . Information retrieved dynamically on 25 June 2007.]
visitation_year = 2007
governing_body = National Park Service

Kobuk Valley National Park is in northwestern Alaska convert|25|mi|km|0|lk=on north of the Arctic Circle. It was designated a United States National Park in 1980 by the Alaska National Interest Lands Conservation Act. It is noted for the Great Kobuk Sand Dunes and caribou migration routes. The park offers backcountry camping, hiking, backpacking, and dog sledding. There are no designated trails or roads in the park, which at convert|1669813|acre|km2|2, is approximately the size of the state of Delaware.Bounded by the Waring Mountains in the South and the Baird Mountains in the North, it is the center of a vast ecosystem between Selawik National Wildlife Refuge and the Noatak National Preserve. It is over convert|75|mi|km|0 by river to the Chukchi Sea. The Gates of the Arctic National Park and Preserve lie convert|32|mi|km|0 to the west. The most visible animals are the 400,000 caribou of the Western Arctic herd. The herd migrates annually between their winter breeding grounds, south of the Waring Mountains, and their summer calving grounds, north of the Baird Mountains. The herd's annual crossing of the Kobuk River is central to the Inupiaq people's subsistence hunting.

No roads lead to the park. It is reachable by foot, dogsled, snowmobile, and chartered air taxis from Nome and Kotzebue year-round. The park is one of the least visited in the National Park System, ranking as the least visited national park in the country in 2006 with just 3,005 visitors. Incredibly, this dropped to just 847 visitors in 2007.


External links

* [http://www.nps.gov/kova Official site]
* [http://www.kobuk.valley.national-park.com/info.htm#esta In depth information]
* [http://prosites-robs7.homestead.com/KobukValley.html A traveler's experience visiting the park]

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