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Aulavik National Park is a Terrific Northwest Territories Camping Destination!



Located on Banks Island, Aulavik National Park protects more than 7,500 square miles of artic lowland. Within the park is a variety of landscapes, from fertile river valleys and polar deserts to rolling hills, buttes, badlands, and beautiful seacoasts. The Thomsen River runs through the middle of the park, offering visitors a chance to navigate on the most northerly navigable river through this beautiful park. The endangered Peary caribou calls the park home, as does the highest population of muskoxen in the world. Foxes, lemmings, barren-ground caribou, artic hares and wolves also roam the barren terrain. Polar bears have also been seen in the park. Only two bird species reside in the park year round, although up to 50 other bird species migrate to the park. The park is completely treeless. The only way to access the park is by plane and there are four landing sites. This beautifully rugged park is an excellent Northwest Territories camping destination!

The park truly is a rugged place and visitors must be completely self-sufficient while visiting. No services, campgrounds, facilities or established trails are offered within the park. In fact, when visiting the park, it is very unlikely that you will come across other campers, so Aulavik National Park is best left to experienced adventurers. The climate is typically very arctic. The tundra is frozen and snow covered September through June and summer is brief and cool. The sun doesn’t set mid May through late July, offering plenty of time to see everything the park has to open. There is no true darkness late April through late August, and temperatures range between 30 and 70 degrees with a daily average of 50. Coastal temperatures are cooler. Snow and freezing temperatures are a possibility any time of the year. Aulavik is considered a polar desert. Winters are long, dark, windy and snowy.

This park is very rugged and remote, offering the most adventurous people a rare opportunity of enjoying the solitude and beauty of raw nature. The short 10 weeks of sunshine is the best time to visit. The diverse landscape means many opportunities for adventure. You can hike, paddle down the Thomsen River, admire coastal views, and enjoy the pure solitude of rugged wilderness. Despite its remote location and rugged landscape, the park has over 230 archeological sites that suggest the presence of human life dating back as much as 3,400 years. The remote landscape really is an excellent Northwest Territories camping destination for adventurous campers!

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