The Bush Sights

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Wood-Tikchik State Park

Wood-Tikchik State Park Review

In the Bristol Bay region, Wood-Tikchik State Park —the nation's largest state park—is a water-based wildland despite its inland setting. Two separate groups of large, idyllic, interconnected lakes, some up to 45 mi long, dominate the park. Grizzlies, caribou, porcupines (people who live in the Bush will tell you they taste like squirrels), eagles, and loons abound in the park's forests and tundra, but Wood-Tikchik is best known for its fish. The park's lakes and streams are critical spawning habitat for five species of Pacific salmon; they also support healthy populations of rainbow trout, arctic char, arctic grayling, and northern pike. And where there are fish, there are fishermen: Wood-Tikchik is kind of a Holy Grail locale for serious anglers; all that water is perfect for canoes and kayaks, too.

Managed as a wild area, Wood-Tikchik has no maintained trails and few visitor amenities. Most campsites here are primitive, and anyone planning to explore the park should be experienced in backcountry travel and camping.

Besides the many large lakes and streams that fill its 1.6 million acres, the park's landscape includes rugged mountains, glaciers, and vast expanses of tundra. Think of it as a kind of CliffsNotes to the best of Alaskan scenery.

Updated: 06-12-2013

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