U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service logo A Unit of the National Wildlife Refuge System
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National Wildlife Refuge

Becharof Refuge is a land of spectacular beauty with rolling tundra, glacial lakes, towering mountains, and pristine coastlines
Building 4, Fish and Wildlife Service Road
P.O. Box 298
King Salmon, AK   99613
E-mail: becharof@fws.gov
Phone Number: 907-246-4250 or 907-246-3339
Visit the Refuge's Web Site:
Ruth Lake, one of many special places on the Becharof National Wildlife Refuge
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The Refuge preserves a rich historical legacy. Fossils from the Refuge date from the Late Cretaceous period, the noted time when dinosaurs became extinct. Much more recently, the lands that now comprise the refuge served as a crossroads where prehistoric cultures from the Aleutian Islands, Kodiak, western Alaska coast and interior Alaska met and merged, creating unique local cultures. There are numerous known historical sites on the Refuge. The area was important in the early history of Alaska with Russian explorers and trappers active in the region. Later, the area played an important role in the early development of Alaska's commercial fishing industry and was the scene of some of the earliest scientific oil exploration efforts in the world. Kanatak, a Native village located on the Pacific Coast turned into an oil exploration boomtown in the 1920's. When the Bear Creek oil well was drilled in 1959, near the recently abandoned village of Kanatak, it was the deepest well that had ever been drilled in the world. Despite all of the pre-refuge oil exploration activities, none of the wells were successful.

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