Prepare your trip emergency plan

Arctic Refuge does not initiate searches for overdue visitors. The Alaska State Troopers, with support from the volunteer-led North Slope Borough Search and Rescue Department (, may be able to respond when a member of the public reports a legitimate concern, and if resources are available.

In addition to being prepared for the conditions and challenges you’ll face on remote adventures, visitors should leave detailed information with someone who will take action when you do not return and/or check-in with them as planned. Key information to leave that will help searchers includes the following:

  • Who you will contact, and by what date, to let them know you’ve returned
  • Trip dates as well as planned route for each day you expect to travel (include names of rivers or other recognizable physical features along route, and coordinates, if possible)
  • Commercial service providers used and their contact information (ex. air taxi)
  • List what considerations might make you extend your trip
  • Date YOU would consider yourself overdue
  • Number of people in your group (adults/children) and their names/contact information/emergency contacts
  • Extent of personal experience in the area
  • Extent of personal experience for the activity type (ex. white-water rafting – expert; backcountry navigation – novice; etc.)
  • Method(s) of travel and dates for each travel method
  • Primary activities planned (hunting, fishing, pack rafting, etc.)
  • Complete description of vehicle/boat/snow machine/other (include make, model, color, license, or other ID plate number)
  • Equipment description (color and style of tents, packs, outerwear)
  • Emergency equipment in possession (ex. first aid kit, signaling device, fire starter, emergency blanket)
  • Medications required and the number of days excess you have in possession (describe)
  • Communications (list any PLB (personal locator beacon), VHF radio, Satellite phone, spot, etc.) and identification numbers/instructions
  • Any other relevant information that would aid searchers