Ivvavik National Park

Located on the western portion of the Yukon North Slope, Ivvavik National Park boasts 10,168 square kilometres of unspoiled beauty. It is also the first Canadian national park created by a land claim (1984). Parameters for Ivvavik National Park were set out in the Inuvialuit Final Agreement (IFA), and made official via the National Parks Act. Like Herschel Island (Qikiqtaruk) Territorial Park, our Council provides guidance and advice on management and planning within Ivvavik's boundaries.

Many Footprints

Ivvavik National Park is home to some unique environmental and cultural features, including 

  • the 10,000-year-old Firth River Canyon,
  • an important early archaeological site at Engigstciak,
  • two sites where the first Thule Eskimo remains were found, and
  • ancient caribou fences, once used by coastal people for hunting.

Today, it continues to be an important part of the Inuvialuit homeland and a place to practice traditional pursuits, like hunting, fishing, gathering with family, and berry picking. Areas along the coast, in particular, remain as key travel corridors. Check out our recent Inuvialuit Traditional Use Study for the Yukon North Slope for more on how Inuvialuit have and continue to use this land.

Traditional Use Study

Interactive Camera Trap Map - Want to get to know the residents of Ivvavik National Park? Scroll through the story map to read about the animals that have been caught on camera or click on different locations to see who has been spotted where!

Peak to Plain

The park's landscape is diverse and includes arctic tundra on the coastal plain, alpine tundra in the British Mountains, and boreal forest. Most of the Ivvavik National Park was ice-free during the Wisconsin Ice Age and does not bear scars from this time, unlike land to the east. This range of habitat types supports a plethora of wildlife and plant communities.

New Life

Ivvavik is an Inuvialukton word meaning "a place to give birth and raise young". In fact, the coastal area is used as a calving ground (and a refuge from biting insects) by the Porcupine Caribou Herd. Ivvavik is also home to the most northern herd of Dall sheep, to grizzly and polar bears, and to a growing muskox population. Geese and other waterfowl raise their young in Ivvavik, too.