Did you know Alaska is home to the country’s largest wilderness area? The Wrangell-Saint Elias Wilderness is the largest one with over 9 million acres! Also located in Alaska is the largest area of unbroken wilderness land. The Noatak and Gates of the Arctic Wildernesses combine to spread across almost 13 million acres! In fact, 52% of all of our country’s designated wilderness area is located in Alaska.
Armed with support from Alaska Geographic, the Chugach National Forest, the National Park Service, and the Northern Alaska Environmental Center, former Chugach Children’s Forest Media Interns Aviva Hirsch and Nikki Navio traveled the state to discover what wilderness means to the people living closest to it. Their travels took them to Prince William Sound, Denali, Lake Clark, Arctic Village, and beyond. Stay tuned as their podcasts and other multimedia pieces from around Alaska are posted throughout this year of the 50th Anniversary of the Wilderness Act. This is part of a larger program celebrating Alaska’s Wilderness in 2014 through a partnership with Alaska’s National Parks, National Forests, and the Content Producers’ Guild.
In the story below, Nikki and Aviva report on their adventures with Alaskan youth in Prince William Sound as part of the Chugach Children’s Forest 2013 Youth Expeditions.
In this next story, Nikki and Aviva interview wilderness experts who work in or near the Arctic National Wildlife Range, and also residents of Arctic Village, the closest community to ANWR.
Nikki and Aviva want to thank the funders and supporters of their project: The Chugach National Forest, The National Park Service, the Northern Alaska Environmental Center, Audubon Alaska, Wesleyan University, University of Alaska Fairbanks, Alaska Geographic, Alaska Wilderness League, Alaska Teen Media Institute, Alaska Broadcasters Association, Content Producers Guild, Wesleyan University College of the Environment, University of Alaska Fairbanks Undergraduate Research, KUAC Fairbanks, and more…