The Lake and Peninsula Borough contains seventeen communities that are located within three distinct areas of the region: The Lakes Area,the Upper Peninsula Area, and the Chignik Area.
LAKES AREA VILLAGES
Port Alsworth * Nondalton * Pedro Bay * Iliamna * Newhalen
Kokhanok * Igiugig * Levelock
All the attractions that define Alaska--rugged mountains, pristine rivers and streams, abundant fish and wildlife--can be found in this region. The region's lakes, rivers, and mountains provide abundant recreational opportunities for wilderness adventurers. Anglers find trophy fish in its waters, hikers explore high tundra slope, river-runners thrill to the Tlikakila, Mulchatna, and Chilikadrotna Wild Rivers, and campers find lake shores inspirational. The region is unsurpassed for wildlife viewing and photographic opportunities.
Lake Clark, situated in the northeastern corner of the region, is nearly 50 miles long and is surrounded by Lake Clark National Park and Preserve,one of Alaska's often overlooked National Parks. The mountains of the Lake Clark National Park and Preserve are part of Dall Sheep territory,the only wild, white sheep in the world.
Iliamna Lake lies in the middle of the region and is the largest lake in Alaska and the second largest lake in the United States, at 1,115 square miles. The lake is distinguished for its resident population of freshwater seals, one of only two colonies of freshwater seals in the world. It also is reputed to harbor a sea monster known locally as Ogo Pogo.
The Kvichak (pronounced Kwee-jack) and Alagnak Rivers lie in the southern-most part of the region, and are world-renowned for its rainbowtrout. A number of pristine rivers run through the area, including the turquoise-colored Newhalen River, which connects Six-mile Lake and Iliamna Lake.
Although continuously inhabited since early prehistoric times, the area remains wild and sparsely populated, with aircraft providing the primary means of access. There are no roads from the outside, and only about 20 miles of gravel road within thousands of square miles of wilderness. Iliamna is the transportation hub of the area, served by several airlines providing daily scheduled flights from Anchorage. Air taxis and charter service provide transportation to outlying villages.
UPPER PENINSULA AREA VILLAGES
Egegik * Pilot Point * Ugashik * Port Heiden
Katmai National Park and Preserve, Aniakchak National Monument and Preserve, Becharof National Wildlife Refuge, Aniakchak National Wild and Scenic River, and numerous State Critical Habitat Areas are all located within this region, preserving the area's remarkable natural and cultural history.
This region has been continuously occupied for the past 9,000 years. Archaeological sites are scattered throughout the Alaska Peninsula,making them some of the oldest sites in North America. Katmai National Park and Preserve is the site of the Brooks River National Historic Landmark with North America's highest concentration of prehistoric human dwellings. For those who would like a glimpse into the past, are constructed barbara (a semi-subterranean house) is located just a short hike west of Brooks Camp. Native villages of today provide a hint into the area's cultural history through the traditional subsistence lifestyles its residents continue to practice.
Forming the backbone of the Alaska Peninsula, the Aleutian Range is part of the Pacific Ring of Fire, and has many large, volcanic peaks. One of the most prominent mountains in the area, Mt. Peulik, is located in the Becharof National Wildlife Refuge. This peak sits at the southern edge of Becharof Lake, the second largest lake in Alaska. Other points of interest in the refuge include the “Gas Rocks”, where you can view carbon dioxide seeping through fractures in the rock. A hot spring in the lake discharging 120-degree water can also be found at the base of the Gas Rocks. Another unique geological feature in the refuge is Ukinrek Maars. Maars are shallow, low-rimmed craters that are caused by violent geological activity. The two Ukinrek Maars were formed in 1977 along the south shore of Becharof Lake. This is the only maar-producing activity ever recorded in the United States.
In the heart of the Alaska Peninsula lies the Aniakchak Caldera. Formed 3,500 years ago after the collapse of a 7,000-foot mountain, the six-mile wide caldera is part of the Aniakchak National Monument and Preserve. More recent eruptions have left behind cinder cones, lava flows, and explosion pits inside the caldera. Surprise Lake, located in the caldera, is the source of the Aniakchak Wild River, a 27-mile river which cascades through a 1,500-foot gash in the caldera wall known as “The Gates.” Class III and IV rapids dropping 70-feet per mile for 13 miles, thrill experienced river runners.
Big-Game hunting is a popular activity in this region, particularly in the Becharof and Alaska Peninsula Wildlife Refuges, where world-class trophy moose and brown bear are regularly taken. Great sportfishing opportunities for salmon and fresh water species abound in the waters of Becharof and Ugashik Lakes and their tributaries. No matter the recreational activity – hunting, fishing, hiking, river-running, bird watching, wildlife viewing – this region is packed full of adventures waiting for those who are willing to venture off a path less traveled.
Access to this region is primarily by air. There are regularly scheduled flights from Anchorage to King Salmon, which serves as the transportation hub for the area. Air taxis and charter service provide transportation to the outlying villages of Egegik, Ugashik, Pilot Point and Port Heiden, and other points of interest.
CHIGNIK AREA VILLAGES
Chignik * Chignik Lagoon * Chignik Lake
Perryville * Ivanof Bay
This region is home to some of the finest fresh and saltwater fishing in the world where anglers fish for salmon, halibut, trout, ling cod, black bass, and more. Trophy Brown Bear and Moose taken from the area are listed in the top spots of the Boone and Crockett Club. Wilderness adventures aren’t limited to fishing and hunting. Other popular activities include hiking, kayaking, bear viewing, beach combing, whale watching, clam digging and berry picking.
Characterized by cool summers and warm rainy winters, these five villages are located on the south shore of the Alaska Peninsula, bordering the Pacific Ocean. They are the most difficult villages in the region to reach by air due to their remote locations, frequent high winds, and mountainous surroundings, but are well worth the effort.
Having no land connections to neighboring communities in the region, these villages are accessible only by air and sea. Scheduled daily flights to Chignik, Chignik Lagoon, Chignik Lake and Perryville are available from King Salmon. Ivanof Bay is accessible only by charter flights. Weekly barge service from Seattle to Chignik is available during the summer and monthly during the winter. The state ferry operates bi-monthly from Kodiak to Chignik between April and October, and is the only community in the region served by the Alaska Marine Highway System. ATVs and skiffs are the most common modes of local transportation.
Commercial fishing and subsistence activities are the mainstays of the economy in this region. Salmon, halibut, black cod, and tanner crab are harvested in the area. The Chignik area is best known for its “Castle Cape Reds” where fisher men use seines and seine boats to harvest salmon bound for Chignik Lake and Black Lake.