Facility Rules and Policies

All Arctic Refuge lands are open to the public at all times, and there are no visitor fees charged anywhere on the refuge. Hunting, fishing, and firearms are allowed following state regulations. 

Safety and self-reliance

Ensure that you have the skills necessary for a successful visit. Know your expertise and limitations in remote, backcountry travel and survival.

Careful preparation and self-reliance are necessary for a successful visit to the refuge. Leave your itinerary with family or friends and put a safety plan in place before you visit.    

Leave no trace

Large groups may leave especially noticeable and lasting impacts on fragile Arctic landscapes. Refuge employees and research project leaders limit their groups to the fewest necessary participants. Commercial guides are required to limit their group size. We encourage private users to do the same. 

The recommended maximum group size is 7 people for land travel and 10 people for water travel.

The use of domestic sheep, goats, and camelids (i.e., llamas and alpacas) on Arctic National Wildlife Refuge lands is prohibited, due to concerns about disease transmission to Dall sheep and other wildlife.  

Help us reduce the harmful introduction of invasive species invasive species
An invasive species is any plant or animal that has spread or been introduced into a new area where they are, or could, cause harm to the environment, economy, or human, animal, or plant health. Their unwelcome presence can destroy ecosystems and cost millions of dollars.

Learn more about invasive species
! Before entering the refuge, make sure clothing, equipment, vehicles and aircraft are clean by removing all dirt, mud and debris. Watch out for “hitchhikers”—those seeds that stick to your socks, clothing or domestic animals’ fur. Visitors who bring animals to the refuge should choose bedding and feed materials that will not introduce new plants by accident.

Leave natural objects and private property undisturbed. It is illegal to remove specimens from National Wildlife Refuges without a pre-arranged collection permit. Leave noticeable objects for others to enjoy. 

Drone Users

The use of unmanned aircraft systems (UAS/drones) on Arctic Refuge is prohibited unless authorized in advance through a special use permit or letter of authorization.