News Releases

Last Update: October 16, 2014


Park Closing Dates


Caines Head Trail Conditions - March 6

Chena River Trail Conditions - June 28

Denali State Park Conditions - October 12

Hatcher Pass Trail Conditions - October 20

Kachemak Bay Trail Conditions - August 27

Nancy Lake Park Conditions - October 2

Hatcher Pass Recreational Conflict Report

Chugach Trail Maps


Recruits sought for Chugach State Park Citizens Advisory Board

(Anchorage, AK) - The Chugach State Park Citizens Advisory Board is seeking applications to fill five upcoming vacancies on the 15-member board.

The role of the advisory board is to advise the Division of Parks & Outdoor Recreation on matters involving Chugach State Park, to promote protection of the park’s natural and cultural resources, and to facilitate communication between the public and the park managers. The board meets on a monthly basis and each member is expected to serve on two committees. Board members serve for three years and terms are staggered so that seats open each year.

The deadline to submit an application is Nov. 7 and applicants will be considered for the term beginning in January. An application form may be obtained at Completed applications may be mailed to 18620 Seward Highway, Anchorage, AK 99516 or scanned and emailed to

Board members represent a broad spectrum of public interests involved with or affected by Chugach State Park. The nomination process is designed to ensure that no single viewpoint dominates the board. In addition, the board’s bylaws call upon each member to represent the broad public interest, consistent with park purposes, rather than advocate on behalf of one specific group.

The time commitment for board members is roughly eight hours per month. Board meetings are held at 6 p.m. on the second Monday of the month. Committee meetings are scheduled by the committee chairs and vary in frequency depending on project needs and deadlines. Current committees include: Access, Budget, Nominations, Trails, Planning, Seward Highway Design, Outreach and Wildlife.

CONTACT: Tom Harrison, Chugach/Southwest Area Superintendent, 907-345-5014 (Oct 2014)


SnowTRAC grants approved for trail grooming and safety

(Anchorage, AK) –The Division of Parks and Outdoor Recreation has approved funding for snowmobile trail grooming and a renewed opportunity for a rural transportation safety project after receiving input from the Snowmobile Trails Advisory Council (SnowTRAC), the statewide citizen advisory board that reviews Snowmobile Trail Grant Program applications.

A total of $218,858 will be allocated to 17 organizations for winter trail grooming in the Fairbanks, Mat-Su Kenai Peninsula and Juneau areas. In addition, the $15,000 set aside for a rural transportation safety project was not awarded this year and will be retained for that purpose and offered again during nextyear’s Snowmobile Trails Grant cycle starting April 1.

The Snowmobile Trail Grant Program offers competitive and reimbursable matching grants for developing and maintaining public snowmobile trails and related facilities and for safety, education, and trail signing projects. The Snowmobile Trail Grant Program’s Grooming Pool provides funding for trail grooming, signing, and maintenance. The program is funded with money generated through snowmobile registration.

CONTACT: Darcy Harris, Trails Program Coordinator, 907-269-8699, (Oct 2014)


Roads close for winter in Hatcher Pass East Management Areas

(Palmer, AK) – The Archangel Road at Mile 14.4 of the Hatcher Pass Road and the road that goes over the pass at Mile 17.5 are closed as of today, Tuesday, Oct. 7, according to Alaska State Parks. These are annual closures that take place when the roads become unsafe to travel due to accumulation of snow.

CONTACT: Teri Zell, 907-745-8931, (Oct 2014)


Trails Grant Program Increases Limit for Motorized Projects

(Anchorage, AK) –The Alaska Trails Program announces that the limit for Recreational Trails Program motorized trail projects has been raised to $100,000 from $50,000. Increasing the motorized trail project grant amount will help the program attain the required expenditure ratio of 30% motorized, 30% non-motorized and 40% diversified, and allow for more work to be done or trail equipment to be purchased for a motorized trail project. The limit for non-motorized and diversified trail projects will remain at $50,000.

New application documents and instructions will be on the website August 15 for the new grant cycle. The grant application deadline is November 15. For more information please visit the State Trails Program website or call the program manager at 269-8699.

CONTACT: Darcy Harris, 907-269-8699, (August 2014)


Alaska Boating Safely Handbook available

Anchorage, Alaska - The new addition of the Alaska Boater's Handbook is available online through the Alaska Office of Boating Safety Office or at the Department of Natural Resources Public Information centers in Anchorage and Fairbanks.

In a state where capsizing and falls overboard into cold water continues to account for the majority of boating deaths, the handbook provides practical and relevant information for Alaska's boaters on legal requirements, safe practices and how to prepare for, avoid, and survive a cold water immersion event. In addition to the two Public Information centers, copies of the handbook are available online at or by contacting the Alaska Office of Boating Safety at (907) 269-8706.

The Alaska Office of Boating Safety reminds boaters that by practicing the following safety points they can help ensure everyone has a safe and memorable adventure on the water.

  •  Wearing a life jacket is KEY to surviving a cold water immersion event. ALWAYS wear a life jacket when in an

      open boat or on an open deck

  •  Carrying both communication and signaling devices on your person

  •  Completing a thorough pre-departure check before each trip

  •  Taking boating courses

  •  Avoiding alcohol when boating

Alaska State Parks begins planning for lower Kasilof River boat retrieval project

(Kasilof, AK) - The Alaska Department of Natural Resources, Division of Parks and Outdoor Recreation (DPOR), has received project money to develop a public drift boat takeout on the lower Kasilof River to address increasing demand for such a facility on the popular drift-only fishing portion of the river. Currently, most boaters access the Kasilof at the Alaska State Parks public boat launch at mile 109.4 of the Sterling Highway; however, there is no publicly-owned exit point for boaters on the lower portion of the river.

In the first phase of this project, DPOR is distributing a short questionnaire to gain public input on where a retrieval site should be located, what criteria should be used to evaluate potential locations, and what type of facilities should be constructed. The questionnaire and additional project information is available at: