Vuntut National Park


Location: Yukon Territory
Region: Outside Ontario
Character: Natural Environment Area
Activities:
Rating:
Length/Size: 4,345 km 2

Vuntut National Park
By Parks Canada

Vuntut National Park was established in 1995 after extensive negotiations through the Vuntut Gwitchin First Nation's Final Land Claims Agreement between the Vuntut Gwitchin of Old Crow and the Government of Canada and the Yukon. Vuntut, which means "among the lakes" in the Gwitchin language, encompasses 4,345. sq. km of wilderness in the northwestern corner of the Yukon Territory. The park is bounded by the height of land and Ivvavik National Park of the north, the international boundary and the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to the west, Black Fox Creek to its confluence with the Old Crow River to the east and the Old Crow River to the south.

Vuntut National Park of Canada offers a range of opportunities for the experienced back-country enthusiast from canoeing the Old Crow River to hiking in the mountainous part of the park to winter ski trips.

Visitors to Vuntut National Park of Canada should be prepared to explore the park on their own. There are no facilities or developed trails in the park.
Park Use Permits

ALL OVERNIGHT VISITORS TO THE PARK ARE REQUIRED TO REGISTER PRIOR TO STARTING THEIR TRIP AND TO DE-REGISTER ON COMPLETION OF THEIR TRIP.

You can either register in person at the John Tizya Centre in Old Crow or over the phone with either the Parks Canada First Nation Liason Officer or Resource Management and Public Safety Specialist. Visitors are required to delineate their anticipated travel routes and itinerary in advance of receiving a permit. This information will aid in search and rescue efforts should they be needed. When registering you will be notified of any area closures or known hazards along your proposed route.

Aircraft Landings

An aircraft landing permit is required before ANY aircraft (fixed-wing and rotary) can land in Vuntut National Park of Canada. Each request will be evaluated individually. Permits can be obtained from the John Tizya Centre in Old Crow.

Natural Hazards

Wildlife encounters have the potential of being hazardous. Visitors should be aware of and follow safe practices for traveling in bear country. They should know the proper procedures for bear encounters, food storage, camping and personal hygiene in order to minimize the likelihood of problems with bears. Inquire about the types of bear deterrents that are permitted in the park. Firearms are NOT permitted.

Other wildlife species that could potentially pose threats to visitors include female caribou or moose with calves, bulls in rut or muskox.

Dense concentrations of black flies and mosquitoes occur during the summer (late June-July) and may result in severe insect harassment.

Climate has a dramatic effect on the degree and severity of natural hazards found within the park. The weather is variable and can change quickly. Strong winds can pick up suddenly and temperatures can rise or fall as much as 15° C. in a few hours. Snow can fall at any time of the year. Be prepared for delays due to weather and carry extra food, fuel and clothing. Know the signs and symptoms of hypothermia and be prepared to treat it.

Search and Rescue

Vuntut National Park of Canada is a remote wilderness park. Search and rescue operations are constrained by lack of park facilities, geographical location, weather conditions and small numbers of park staff. Park rescue services are basic and there can be lengthy delays due to weather conditions and the availability of both aircraft and rescue personnel. (Aircraft may have to come from as far away as Inuvik or Dawson City).

Trip Safety

All park visitors must be aware of the inherent risks of traveling to and within Vuntut National Park of Canada. The geographic isolation of the park can compound the severity of any incident. Make sure that you ask appropriate questions and find out about current conditions. Visitors must plan their trips well, be knowledgeable, experienced and self-sufficient to ensure a safe trip.

Regulations
•Removal of natural or cultural objects from the park is prohibited.
•All park waters are closed to fishing.
•All garbage must be packed out.
•It is illegal to feed, harass, approach or cause any undue stress to wildlife.

Topographic Maps

Government of Canada Topographic Maps covering Vuntut National Park of Canada and the Old Crow area at a 1:250,000 scale are :
•Old Crow 116-0 116N
•Davidson Mountains 117B
•Blow River 117A

Maps may be purchased from:

Canada Map Office
615 Booth St.
Ottawa, Ontario
K1A 0E9
Phone:1-800-465-6277

Mac's Fireweed Books
203 Main St.
Whitehorse, Y.T.
Y1A 2B2
Phone: 1-800-661-0508
or (867) 668-2434