Park Condition Reports

Last Update: June 22, 2017line2


Park Opening Dates


Chugach State Park - April 23 

Chena River State Recreation Area - March 30

Denali State Park - June 12

Hatcher Pass East Mgmt. Area & Summit Lake SRS - June 15

Kachemak Bay State Park - June 21

Nancy Lake State Recreation Area - June 16

Hatcher Pass Recreational Conflict Report

News Releases


Proposed repeal and re-adoption of Department Fee Regulations - 6/9/17

Notice of Proposed Regulation Changes on Fees in the Regulations of the Department of Natural Resources June 9, 2017

Fee Regulations Public Review Draft June 9, 2017

Dear Alaskans Letter on Proposed Fee Regulations June 9, 2017

Existing Fee Regulations

Fee Matrix

Public Hearing Presentation

Alaska Historical Commission to meet July 17 in Anchorage

June 16, 2017 (Anchorage, AK) – The Alaska Historical Commission will meet in Anchorage and via teleconference on Monday, July 17, from 9:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. The meeting is open to the public and the teleconference center is at the BP Energy Center, 900 East Benson Blvd.

The commission will consider the Old Willow Community Center and Ch’u’itnu Traditional Cultural Landscape (Tyonek vicinity) nominations for the National Register of Historic Places. They also will consider requests from eligible local governments for historic preservation projects, and review nine proposals to name or change the names of geographic features. They will have an update on activity since their special meeting in April on the 4th Avenue Theatre. The preliminary agenda is posted at

Any person or group wishing to address the commission on the National Register nominations, local government project proposals, or geographic names applications are invited to participate in the public comment session starting at 10:30 a.m. To comment by phone, arrangements must be made in advance by calling 907-269-8714.

A printed copy of the meeting agenda can be requested by calling 907-269-8721, emailing, or writing to the Office of History and Archaeology, Alaska Department of Natural Resources, 550 West 7th Ave., Suite 1310, Anchorage, AK 99501-3565. The National Register documentation is available at

“The Alaska Historical Commission is the review board for the state’s historic preservation program and for naming geographic features in Alaska. More information about the commission is available at

This year’s preparations for a government shutdown are different than in 2015, when the legislature had passed a partially funded budget. This year, money has not been appropriated for any government services. As a government shutdown in Alaska is unprecedented, Department of Law is examining what money could be spent to continue vital state services if the legislature has not fulfilled its constitutional obligation to pass a budget.

CONTACT: Joan Antonson, 907-269-8714,

DNR prepares for public impacts of potential government shutdown

June 8, 2017 (Anchorage, AK) – Natural Resources Commissioner Andy Mack announced today that the Department of Natural Resources is working with Department of Law to prepare for a potential government shutdown, which would likely require the suspension of all agency functions and services not essential to the life, health and safety of Alaskans.

DNR manages the State of Alaska’s land, water and mineral resources. These resources supply most of the revenue for the state General Fund, endow the Permanent Fund, and support thousands of private sector jobs. Even a temporary shutdown could disrupt routine activities on state lands and collection of fees and royalties.

In the event of a government shutdown, DNR would likely continue wildland firefighting operations and operation of the Alaska Volcano Observatory, and reservations for state park cabins via the Reserve America website are expected to remain available. DNR is looking at the possibility that virtually all other DNR programs and activities involving state land, water, forestry, agriculture, geological and natural hazard research, oil and gas leases, pipeline right-of-way oversight, and state parks, could be suspended or experience significant interruptions. The following list describes potential impacts to DNR’s functions, which could be shut down, delayed or interrupted if a fully funded budget is not passed before July 1:

• Issuance of DNR permits and authorizations
• Field inspections, timber and land sales, agricultural certifications, and DNR participation in planned research activities
• Operation of all Recorder’s Office locations, which record documents necessary to complete real property sales and other commercial transactions
• Operation of public restrooms and state park visitor centers
• Park rangers, campground hosts or other personnel to assist visitors
• Operation of state park fee stations, water pumps and other systems that require routine maintenance
• State park lands and campgrounds could remain open for public use but without services
• Operation of public information center locations in Anchorage and Fairbanks, which handle customer service calls, visits, and payments

“I am very hopeful that the Legislature will pass a fully funded budget before July 1 so the Department of Natural Resources can continue to generate revenue for the State of Alaska, support Alaska’s resource-based economy, and facilitate public enjoyment of our state lands,” Commissioner Mack said.

This year’s preparations for a government shutdown are different than in 2015, when the legislature had passed a partially funded budget. This year, money has not been appropriated for any government services. As a government shutdown in Alaska is unprecedented, Department of Law is examining what money could be spent to continue vital state services if the legislature has not fulfilled its constitutional obligation to pass a budget.

CONTACT: Elizabeth Bluemink, 907-269-8434,

Join State Parks and partners for National Trails Day events June 2-4

May 24, 2017 (Anchorage, AK) – The public is invited to get outdoors and help Alaska State Parks and local organizations celebrate National Trails Day by participating in the following guided hikes and trail projects over the weekend of June 2-4. Unless otherwise specified, bring lunch and snacks, water, appropriate clothing, sturdy footwear, sun or safety glasses, gloves, and bug spray.

Volunteer projects in Kachemak Bay State Park, June 2-4
Sign up by Friday, May 26 to work and play across the bay with Alaska State Parks and Friends of Kachemak Bay State Park. Activities include a hike to Grewingk Glacier, camping at Kayak Beach, building a new outhouse, brushing a section of the Sadie Knob Trail, rerouting the South Grace Ridge trail and cleaning the Glacier Spit beach. Alternately, volunteers can remain on the Homer side of the bay and help the Homer Cycling Club expand their Diamond Creek bike trail. For the activities across the bay, there is a charge of $20/person. Tools and water taxi are provided, no skills necessary, fun guaranteed! You must pre-register by May 26. Stop by the Alaska State Park offices on the 2nd floor of the Alaska Islands & Ocean Visitor Center in Homer, fill out your volunteer form and make payment, or email to have the form emailed to you. For more information call Christina at 435-7969. Can’t get enough? Trail work parties and guided Second Saturday hikes on the Homer side of the bay, and Last Saturday hikes across the bay are also planned throughout the summer.

Volunteer work on Middle Fork Trail, Chugach State Park, June 3
Join Alaska State Parks and Alaska Trails at 9 a.m. on June 3 at the Glen Alps parking lot to help reroute a portion of the Middle Fork of Campbell Creek Trail. The trail is being rerouted to bypass a long, muddy, and dilapidated section of the trail. Volunteers will work on cutting in a new sustainable trail on a slope where they can, and installing boardwalks and turnpikes through boggy sections. Most of the work will be done with Pulaskis and shovels and entail some simple carpentry. Guidance and training will be provided by state park trail specialists. For registration and information, go to

Guided Donnelly Dome Hike near Delta Junction, June 3
Join the Delta Junction Trails Association with support from Alaska State Parks at 11 a.m. on June 3 for a guided hike of Donnelly Dome. This hike also celebrates the 75th Anniversary of the Alaska Highway. Meet at the pullout 2.5 miles up the Dome Road off Mile 248 of the Richardson Highway. Bring a Recreation Access Permit which can be obtained at the Fort Greeley Visitor’s Center during regular business hours or at Check on the status of Donnelly East Area 531 by calling 907-873-3181 or by going to the website. This will tell you if the area is open for recreation or if it has been temporarily closed for military training. If closed to training, the backup meeting location will be the pullout on Coal Mine Road at the same time. Please contact Ellen Clark for more information at 907-895-5155.

Volunteer work on Curry Ridge Trail, Denali State Park, near Trapper Creek, June 3
Join Alaska State Parks for hiking and trail work along the Curry Ridge Trail. Meet at 10:30 a.m. at the new Kesugi-Ken Interpretive Center located at Mile 134.5 of the George Parks Highway. Parking is in the day-use lot. Volunteers will hike 4-5 miles and participate in trail work throughout the day, including cutting brush, moving materials and rocks, and compacting soils. Afterward join us for a cookout at the interpretive center. Potluck items are welcome. Please contact Carter Forney at 907-354-5890 (cell) or 907-733-5123 (office) for more information.

Fairbanks multi-agency trail volunteer training, June 3
Join the Fairbanks North Star Borough Parks and Recreation Department at 10 a.m. at the Fairbanks REI store at 19 College Road, Unit A, for a morning trail volunteer training session and an afternoon fieldwork session. Trainings will be led by Christine Byl of Interior Trails. Hosts and sponsors include REI, Interior Trails, Alaska Trails, and the Bureau of Land Management. For more information contact Bryant Wright at or 907-459-7401. Register for the morning session at or the afternoon session at

Seward area self-led hikes and community celebration, June 3-4
Join the Seward Trail Blazers and Iditarod Historic Trail Alliance by planning your own hikes on Saturday and participating in a community celebration on Sunday. On Saturday, The Trail Blazers are encouraging people to get out and walk the trails around town and all over the Kenai Peninsula. In town, there are the bike path/Iditarod Trail and the Two Lakes Trail, as well as the climb up Mt. Marathon. The bike path extends to mile 5, where you can access the Lost Lake trail and the Iditarod Trail can be accessed at Bear Lake or Saw Mill Creek. On June 4, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., the Seward Trail Blazers and the Iditarod Historic Alliance will host a celebration of the 25th anniversary of the building of the Seward bike path, which is recognized as the first miles of the Iditarod National Historic Trail. Refreshments will be available. For more information contact

CONTACT: Darcy Harris, 907-269-8699,

Alaskans invited to participate in Wear Your Life Jacket to Work Day

May 3, 2017 (Anchorage, AK) – Alaskans are invited to join the Office of Boating Safety in promoting safe boating behavior by wearing their life jackets to work on Friday, May 19, and sharing their photos on social media.

The annual “Wear Your Life Jacket to Work Day” event is the public kickoff for Safe Boating Week in Alaska, which runs from May 20-26. Participants in this event can post their photos on Facebook at or Instagram using #AKBoat and #SafeBoating.

The goal of this event is to raise awareness of the versatility and comfort of modern life jackets. Boating is a way of life in Alaska but every year, several people die in boating accidents. Five out of six boating fatalities in Alaska are cold-water immersion related drownings, following a vessel capsizing or swamping, being ejected, or a fall overboard. Nine out of ten who died were not wearing a life jacket. Wearing a life jacket is the simplest way to prevent drowning in a boat accident.

Safe Boating Week focuses on the importance of boaters being “rescue-ready” during the boating season: 1.) Wear a life jacket when in an open boat or on deck, 2.) Carry emergency communication and distress signaling devices on their person, 3.) Attach an engine cut-off switch if equipped, and 4.) All boaters have a means to re-board their boats.

“Alaska waters are cold. Even on calm, sunny, warm, clear blue sky days, a cold-water immersion event can be deadly. While it is the law for persons under the age of 13, everyone should commit to always wearing a life jacket regardless of experience or swimming ability when in an open boat or on deck,” said State Boating Law Administrator Jeff Johnson.

The Office of Boating Safety works to promote safe, and enjoyable boating. Additional resources for boaters can be found at

CONTACT: Kelli Toth, 907-240-6314,

Seasonal trail restrictions planned for Chena River State Recreation Area

April 21, 2017 (Fairbanks, AK) – Starting in May, the Division of Parks and Outdoor Recreation will begin charging day-use fees at 14 state park sites in the Fairbanks area as well as entrance fees at 3 state historical parks located in Hatcher Pass, Ketchikan and Delta Junction. The division charges the same $5-per-vehicle day-use fee at other state park sites throughout Alaska. Adding these new fee sites will further the division’s goal of making park operations more self-sustaining and less reliant on the State of Alaska’s general fund. Please note that visitors can purchase the Alaska State Parks’ $50 annual parking decal in lieu of paying day-use fees.

Additional state park fee information is available at The new fees are as follows:

LocationDay Use FeeEntrance Fee
Independence Mine State Historical Park$5/vehicle$3/person; will only be charged in summer months for access to mine site
Totem Bight State Historical Park$5/vehicle; waived when entrance fee is paid$5/person
Big Delta State Historical Park$5/vehicle; waived when entrance fee is paid$5/person; gives access to roadhouse, museum, barn & telegraph buildings
Chena River State Recreation Area  
Rosehip Campground$5/vehicleN/A
Mile 28 Boat Launch$5/vehicleN/A
Stiles/Colorado Creek Trailhead$5/vehicleN/A
Mile 36.5 Shooting Range$5/vehicleN/A
Mile 37.7 Bridge River Access$5/vehicleN/A
Mile 39.6 Bridge River Access$5/vehicleN/A
Red Squirrel Campground$5/vehicleN/A
Mile 44 Boat Launch$5/vehicleN/A
Mile 48 Pond$5/vehicleN/A
Lower Chena Dome Trailhead$5/vehicleN/A
Upper Chena Dome Trailhead$5/vehicleN/A
Salcha River State Recreation Site$5/vehicleN/A
Clearwater State Recreation Site$5/vehicleN/A
Delta State Recreation Site$5/vehicleN/A

CONTACT: Brooks Ludwig, 451-2698, for Northern Region State Parks, Wayne Biessel at 907-745-8935, for Independence Mine, and Mike Eberhardt at 907-465-2481, for Southeast Alaska State Parks