About the Refuge

Mountain and lake 512x219

Arctic National Wildlife Range was established in 1960 to preserve unique wildlife, wilderness and recreational values. In 1980, the Alaska National Interest Lands Conservation Act (ANILCA) re-designated the Range as part of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, and provided four purposes that guide management of the entire Refuge: to conserve animals and plants in their natural diversity, ensure a place for hunting and gathering activities, protect water quality and quantity, and fulfill international wildlife treaty obligations.

  • Facts and Features

    Caribou antler on tundra

    Arctic Refuge manages approximately 19.64 million acres of land and water in northeastern Alaska. It is administered by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service as a unit of the National Wildlife Refuge System.

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  • Wilderness

    hiker viewing mountains and valley

    Arctic Refuge contains the largest area of designated Wilderness within the National Wildlife Refuge System, "where the earth and its community of life are untrammeled by man." [The Wilderness Act, 1964]

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