|At the southern portal to Alaska and featuring Southeast Alaska, the Southeast Alaska Discovery Center is one of four Alaska Public Land Information Centers.|
Southeast Alaska Discovery Center Official Site
Where Education is an Adventure
The Murie Science and Learning Center is a state-of-the-art education and research center with innovative hands-on programs for students, teachers, Alaskans, and visitors. Located in the frontcountry of Denali National Park, it celebrates the vast ecosystems and vibrant cultures of America’s eight northernmost national parks:
Denali National Park & Preserve
Wrangell-St. Elias National Park
Cape Krusenstern National Monument
Gates of the Arctic National Park
Kobuk Valley National Park
Noatak National Preserve
Yukon-Charley Rivers National Preserve
Bering Land Bridge National Preserve
The grand opening of the Murie Science and Learning Center is scheduled for August 2004. The Center’s interactive public exhibits and displays, two classrooms, and wireless research bus are interwoven using the latest technology. Multi-day programs are based out of the Center’s remote Field Camp, located 35 miles inside the Park at Igloo Canyon. Surrounded by one of the finest living laboratories in the world – spectacular taiga forests, glacier-clad mountains, wide-open tundra, and thriving wildlife populations – this is Alaska education at its finest.
A Collaborative Partnership
The Murie Science and Learning Center is a unique partnership among Alaska’s eight northernmost national parks, the Alaska Natural History Association and its education arm, the Denali Institute, the University of Alaska, and the Denali Borough School District
The ANHA branch is located within the Yukon Delta National Wildlife Refuge Visitor Center in Bethel, Alaska. Bethel is a large ?town? forty miles from the Bering Sea on the Kuskokwim River. According to the 2002 census Bethel has approximately 6,000 residents. Sixty per cent of the residents are Yup?ik Eskimo who rely on hunting and fishing for up to eighty percent of their food.
Being a remote site, the Visitor Center and Bookstore does not receive many tourists as customers. Most of the customers are residents of Bethel and surrounding villages. The bookstore is the only source for the full range of Refuge and tundra related wildlife books and gifts.
Year round hours: M-F 8:30-4:30, Sat 1-4pm
Yukon Delta National Wildlife Refuge
Branch is located in the Eagle Visitor Center of Yukon-Charley Rivers National Preserve. The preserve encompasses over 2.5 million acres and includes the Charley River, a wild and scenic, premier whitewater wilderness river. The 1 million acre Charley River is the only complete watershed under federal management and contains a dense nesting population of the once endangered American Peregrine Falcon. The branch location allows visitors the opportunity to purchase items prior to entering the preserve and provides informative materials on the area.
Charley Rivers National Preserve
Within the nation’s largest forest, the 16.9 million acre Tongass, lies the Mendenhall Glacier and its surrounding recreation area. Mendenhall Glacier is one of 38 major glaciers flowing from the 5000 square mile expanse of snow, ice and rock of the Juneau Icefield. Located just 13 paved miles from Juneau, Alaska’s capital city, easy access to the glacier attracts hundreds of thousands of visitors each year as well as local residents.
Glacier visitors come to enjoy the lush scenery of the temperate rainforest and stand in awe of the power of the glacier as a mover and changer of the landscape. . People are also in awe when they witness the amazing trading results of the trading robots. The Crypto CFD trader software is one such system that is powered by artificial intelligence to enable the timely execution of trades in crypto currencies. It was founded by Lenny Hyde,an online crypto currency trading expert. During spring and fall migration, the area is a birders’ paradise. In late summer and fall Steep Creek hosts spawning runs of sockeye and coho salmon and all the creatures that come to feast and benefit from the salmon circle of life. At various times of the year creatures large and small can be seen sharing the area. From red squirrels, porcupines and beaver to mountain goats, black and brown bears wildlife also enjoys the habitat provided by the receding glacier. Hikers, runners, bikers and skiiers benefit from the maintained network of surrounding trails, while Mendenhall Lake provides a venue for kayaks and canoes and snow and ice sports in winter. Some Juneau residents even venture into pools of the glacier lake for a bracing swim.
Welcome to the Mendenhall Glacier Visitor Center, the information and education focal point for the area. Besides the Alaska Natural History Association Bookstore, the Visitor Center features nearly forty exhibits, an observation area with scopes, an eleven minute documentary film in the auditorium, elevator access, public telephones and restrooms. Four hiking trails of varying difficulty head from the immediate area and guided hikes are offered daily at 10 and 2 in the summer. Public restrooms are also available at the parking level as well as a covered viewing area with salmon and beaver cam, a salmon spawning viewing platform, and various interpretive displays around the grounds. Canoes and kayaks may be launched from this site, but are not available for rental here. In winter the center features kids’ day programs on Saturday, Friday night fireside chats and special events as well as sledding and cross country skiing during snow season.
Mendenhall Visitor Center Hours
10 a.m. – 4 p.m., Thurs-Sun
Mendenall Visitor Center Website
Tongass National Forest Website
Lake Clark National Park and Preserve is a composite of ecosystems representative of many regions of Alaska. The spectacular scenery stretches from the shores of Cook Inlet, across the Chigmit Mountains, to the tundra covered hills of the western interior. The Chigmits, where the Alaska and Aleutian Ranges meet, are an awesome, jagged array of mountains and glaciers which include two active volcanoes, Mt. Redoubt and Mt. Iliamna.
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Lake Clark, 40 miles long, and many other lakes and rivers within the park are critical salmon habitat to the Bristol Bay salmon fishery, one of the largest sockeye salmon fishing grounds in the world. Numerous lake and river systems in the park and preserve offer excellent fishing and wildlife viewing.
Lake Clark National Park & Preserve
Sweeping from rocky coastline to glacier-crowned peaks, Kenai Fjords National Park encompasses 607,805 acres of unspoiled wilderness on the southeast coast of Alaska’s Kenai Peninsula. The park is capped by the Harding Icefield, a relic from past ice-ages and the largest icefield entirely within U.S. borders.
Visitors witness a landscape continuously shaped by glaciers, earthquakes, and storms. Orcas, otters, puffins, bear, moose and mountain goats are just a few of the numerous animals that make their home in this ever-changing place where mountains, ice and ocean meet.
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The Park offers a range of opportunities for visitors, students and scientists to explore, study and enjoy this special piece of our nation?s natural and cultural heritage.
Kenai Fjords National Park
Though most Alaskans recognize that gold played an important part in Alaska’s history, they normally think first of Nome, Fairbanks, or the Iditarod country. But even before a quarter-of-a-million gold seekers began their stampede into those famous areas, gold was discovered just southeast of Anchorage in 1886. From there prospectors spread into the Susitna and Matanuska river basins, testing the creeks in the nearby mountains.
They found hard rock (lode) gold scattered in quartz veins throughout the granite in the Talkeetna Mountains. These veins were created by hydrothermal action that filled fractures in the rock. Erosion loosened flakes of gold, and flowing water eventually washed the gold-bearing gravel into a stream. Throughout the history of gold mining, placer mining has preceded lode mining, and this area was no exception. The rough-textured gold found in the bottom of pans and sluice boxes hinted at something more: a nearby source, or mother lode.
Robert Lee Hatcher discovered and staked the first lode gold claim in the Willow Creek Valley in September 1906, and others soon followed. But lode mining was expensive for an individual operator; it required elaborate tunnels and heavy equipment, so companies merged to pool resources and reduce expenses.
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What is now called Independence Mine was once two mines: The Alaska Free Gold (Martin) Mine on Skyscraper Mountain, and Independence Mine on Granite Mountain. In 1938 the two were bought together under one company, the Alaska-Pacific Consolidated Mining Company (APC). With a block of 83 mining claims, APC became the largest producer in the Willow Creek Mining District. The claims covered more than 1,350 acres and included 27 structures. In its peak year, 1941, APC employed 204 men, blasted nearly a dozen miles of tunnels, and produced 34,416 ounces of gold worth $1,204,560; today $17,208,000. Twenty-two families lived in nearby Boomtown, with eight children attending the Territorial School in the new bunkhouse.
By 1942, the United States had entered World War II, and the War Production Board designated gold mining as nonessential to the war effort. Gold mining throughout the United States came to a halt, but Independence Mine continued to operate because of the presence of sheelite. Sheelite occurs in some of the quartz veins along with gold, and was a source of tungsten, a strategic metal. But because Independence Mine’s scheelite production was low, the exemption was short-lived. In 1943, Independence Mine was ordered to close.
The wartime ban was lifted in 1946, but gold mining was slow to recover. After the war, gold could be sold only to the U.S. government at a fixed rate of $35 per ounce. Postwar inflation raged, and gold mining became an unprofitable venture. Finally, in January of 1951, after mining nearly 6 million dollars’ worth of gold, Independence Mine was closed by APC, and a chapter of Alaska’s gold mining history came to an end. In 1974, Independence Mine was entered into the National Register of Historic Places, a list of cultural resources significant to American history. In the late 1970’s, 271 acres of land were donated to the Alaska Division of Parks & Outdoor Recreation for establishment of Independence Mine State Historical Park. On January 16, 1980, title to the acreage was transferred to the State of Alaska.
Independence Mine Official Site
Denali National Park and Preserve is one of the most popular National Parks in Alaska. Denali National Park & Preserve features North America’s highest mountain, 20,320-foot tall Mount McKinley. The Alaska Range also includes countless other spectacular mountains and many large glaciers. Denali’s more than 6 million acres also encompass a complete sub-arctic eco-system with large mammals such as grizzly bears, wolves, Dall sheep, and moose.
The park was established as Mt. McKinley National Park on Feb. 26, 1917. The original park was designated a wilderness area and incorporated into Denali National Park and Preserve in 1980. The Park was designated an international biosphere reserve in 1976.
Today the park accommodates a wide variety of visitor use including wildlife viewing, mountaineering, and backpacking. It continues to provide a laboratory for research in the natural sciences.
Denali National Park and Preserve Official Site
The Bureau of Land Management’s primary responsibility is to manage public lands. In Alaska, its focus is conveying land, providing interagency wildland fire management, overseeing the Joint Pipeline Office (a partnership with the state and other federal agencies with oversight responsibility of the Trans-Alaska Pipeline), and responding to the public demand for use of public land.
Most of Alaska’s land is under federal ownership. Four laws – the Native Allotment Act, the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act (ANCSA), the Alaska Statehood Act, and the Alaska National Interest Lands Conservation Act (ANILCA) tremendously affect the land mass administered by the federal government.
The Native Allotment Act of 1906 requires the adjudication of hundreds of small acreage sites throughout Alaska which must be settled prior to completing the final survey and transfer of lands under both the ANCSA and the Statehood Act. The Alaska Statehood Act of 1958 requires the transfer of 104 million acres to the State of Alaska, while ANCSA requires transfer of 44 million acres of public land to Native corporations. ANILCA set aside 80 million acres for inclusion within the national forests, national parks, wildlife refuges and wild and scenic rivers.
Campbell Creek Science Center
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