|a l a s k a j o u r n e y . c o m|
Population: 292 (85 percent Eskimo).
Travel Attractions: Gateway to Gates of the Arctic National Park and Preserve.
Getting There: Air taxi from Fairbanks, Deadhorse, and other points; tundra "cat-trains" in winter.
Information: City Office, P.O. Box 21030, Anaktuvuk Pass, AK 99721, 661-3612, www.ilovealaska.com/alaska/AnaktuvukPass.
Located in the divide between the John and Anaktuvuk Rivers, the village of Anaktuvuk Pass sits at 2,200 feet in the heart of the Brooks Range. Semi-nomadic Nunamiut Eskimos (inland northern Inupiaq Eskimos) long used the pass as a camp while following the caribou migrations. With the collapse of the herd and the introduction of Western lifestyle opportunities, the Nunamiuts disbanded in the region. Subsequently, Chandler Lake and Killik River Nunamiuts returned and established a permanent settlement here.
Subsistence hunting and trapping are important economically, as are guiding services, arts and crafts, and corporation services provided by oil revenues. Anaktuvuk Pass is becoming a somewhat popular jumping-off point for expeditions into the Brooks Range. There is also commerce from gambling.
If youre waiting for a plane or guide, visit the Simon Paneak Memorial Museum. Billed as Americas farthest-north museum, various artifacts and educational displays recall the heritage of the Nunamiut Inupiat Eskimos. Several artifacts were produced by residents using traditional methods that date back thousands of years. P.O. Box 21085, Anaktuvuk Pass, AK 99721, 661-3413.
Where to Stay and Eat in Anaktuvuk Pass
Nunamiut Corporation Hotel, 661-3220. $170 (includes three meals), $125 in winter (no meals available). The only place in town, mainly a work camp. Restaurant, store, camping, cable TV.