Park Condition Reports

Last Update: July 11, 2018

News Releases


Construction update released for Chena River State Recreation Area

June 6, 2018 (Fairbanks, AK) – Alaska State Parks through its contractor is sharing an updated construction schedule for trailhead improvements and associated temporary closures in the Chena River State Recreation Area.

The Upper Chena Dome Trailhead, Angel Creek Hillside Trail, and Upper and Lower Angel Creek public use cabins will close July 5 and reopen July 28. The closures are necessary because the Upper Chena Dome trailhead is the only access point and safe parking area for the Angel Creek Hillside Trail and cabins.

The Compeau Trailhead will close July 28 and reopen on August 12. However, the Compeau Trail will remain open and accessible from Twin Bears Camp at Mile 30 of the Chena Hot Springs Road.

The public can obtain current closure information by calling the Alaska State Parks Northern Region office at 451-2695.

These projects will improve hunter access, increase parking, and add restrooms, and are being funded by a federal Pittman-Robertson Act grant.

CONTACT: Brooks Ludwig, 451-2698, brooks.ludwig@alaska.gov


State park access projects underway soon in Fairbanks area

May 31, 2018 (Fairbanks, AK) – It’s going to be a busy summer season for recreational access upgrades in the Chena River and Lower Chatanika state parks recreation areas.

Trailhead upgrades are planned in the Chena River State Recreation Area at the Compeau, Mastodon, and Upper Chena Dome trailheads. This work will improve hunter access, increase parking, and add restrooms. State Parks is also making a variety of upgrades at the Olnes Pond and Whitefish campgrounds at the Lower Chatanika State Recreation Area – adding culverts, re-grading the access road, and other maintenance.

Park users can expect temporary closures in June and July during construction. For current closures, call the Alaska State Parks Northern Region office at 451-2695.

The projects in Chena River State Recreation Area will continue throughout the summer. During construction, only one trailhead will close at a time and closures aren’t expected until mid-July.

Construction at the Lower Chatanika State Recreation Area will begin on June 11. The Olnes Pond campground and day-use area at Mile 10.5 of Elliott Highway, will close to the public on June 11. The Whitefish campground and day-use area at Mile 11 of the Elliott Highway, will remain open during construction at Olnes Pond. Once Olnes Pond reopens, Whitefish will close for construction. Both campgrounds and day-use areas will briefly reopen from June 29 to July 9 to accommodate campers during the July 4th holiday.

The projects are being funded by a federal Pittman-Robertson Act grant at a cost of approximately $2.4 million.

CONTACT: Brooks Ludwig, 451-2698, brooks.ludwig@alaska.gov


Trail restrictions remain in effect for Chena River State Recreation Area

May 21, 2018 (Fairbanks, AK) – Due to heavy snowfall along with a late breakup, seasonal trail restrictions in the Chena River State Recreation Area will remain in effect until Friday, June 1.

The Compeau, Stiles, and Angel Creek Hillside trails will remain closed to all trail uses except walking. The seasonal closure is in response to a 200 percent increase in last winter’s snowfall. Snow is still present at higher elevations and the ground is still frozen at or near the surface.

Alaska State Parks is reluctant to restrict any uses unless there are no other viable management alternatives. In this case, the benefits of protecting the usefulness of these trails outweigh the inconveniences of seasonal restrictions. Trail users are urged to respect the integrity of the trails so others may continue to enjoy them. Violations may be reported to the State Parks office at 451-2695 or during evenings and weekends, call Alaska State Troopers and they will contact the park enforcement team.

CONTACT: Brooks Ludwig, 451-2698, brooks.ludwig@alaska.gov


Outdoor Recreational Trails Advisory Board recruiting new members

May 10, 2018 (Anchorage, AK) – The Division of Parks and Outdoor Recreation is seeking multiple candidates to fill positions representing both motorized and non-motorized trail users on the Outdoor Recreational Trails Advisory Board (ORTAB). Applicants should have knowledge, experience, and interest in outdoor recreational activities and grant-funded programs.

The primary role of the ORTAB is to assist in evaluating grant proposals for the Recreational Trails Program and Land and Water Conservation Fund. Since 2000, these programs have invested over 30 million dollars in trail projects throughout the state, creating critical and sustainable infrastructure while supporting private sector jobs throughout Alaska. Because ORTAB members carry a wide array of trail and public land user experiences, they are occasionally asked for additional advice on other outdoor recreation related subjects.

Anyone interested in serving on the ORTAB should submit a letter of interest, brief resume, and completed questionnaire to the State Trails Program Manager, Darcy Harris at darcy.harris@alaska.gov. The deadline to apply is August 1, 2018. This is a Commissioner-appointed position with a three-year term, and the board meets a minimum of twice per year, at least once in person in Anchorage or as needed telephonically. Additional information regarding the ORTAB and the Recreational Trails Program can be found at http://dnr.alaska.gov/parks/grants/trails.htm.

Link to questionnaire: http://dnr.alaska.gov/parks/grants/ortabquestionnaire.pdf


Trail restrictions delayed 2 weeks for Chena River State Recreation Area

April 24, 2018 (Fairbanks, AK) – Thanks to heavy snowfall along with a late breakup, seasonal trail use restrictions in the Chena River State Recreation Area will be delayed for two weeks, until Friday, May 4.

The Compeau, Stiles, and Angel Creek Hillside trails will close May 4 to all trail uses except walking. The seasonal closures protect the state’s investment and sustain summer motorized use of these popular trails by allowing them to thaw and water to disperse without disturbance. Weather dependent, the trails will reopen Thursday, May 24 in time for the Memorial Day weekend.

Other trails that will stay open an additional two weeks are the South Fork, Colorado Creek, and Angel Creek Valley Trails. These are winter-only trails and will remain open to snow machine use until May 4.

Alaska State Parks is reluctant to restrict any uses unless there are no other viable management alternatives. In this case, the benefits of protecting the usefulness of these trails outweigh the inconveniences of seasonal restrictions. Trail users are urged to respect the integrity of the trails so others may continue to enjoy them. Violations may be reported to the State Parks office at 451-2695 or during evenings and weekends, call Alaska State Troopers and they will contact the park enforcement team.

CONTACT: Brooks Ludwig, 551-2698, brooks.ludwig@alaska.gov