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Arctic Parks/Canada

Introducing Arctic Parks

North of the Arctic Circle, the Yukon's population numbers a few hundred. It's a lonely land with little evidence of humans and only the hardiest venture here during the short summers.

The 280-person village of Old Crow is home to the Vuntut Gwitch'in First Nations and is unreachable by vehicle. Residents subsist on caribou from the legendary 130,000-strong Porcupine herd, which migrates each year between the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) in Alaska and the Yukon. Not surprisingly, the locals are against the perennial threat of oil drilling on the US side of the border in the ANWR.

On the Yukon side of this vast flat arctic tundra, a large swath of land is now protected in two adjoining national parks, Vuntut and Ivvavik. Information on both can be obtained from the Parks Canada office in Inuvik, NWT, where you can get information on the very limited options for organizing visits to the parks (think chartered planes, long treks over land and water, and total self-sufficiency). There are no facilities of any kind in the parks.

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