Every year over 57,000 visitors travel to Wrangell St. Elias National Park in the southern US state of Alaska. This extends over an area of 53,320 square kilometers. With this really impressive size, it is also the largest national park in the United States. Wrangell St. Elias National Park was established on December 2, 1980.
As is more common in the United States, Wrangell St. Elias National Park is made up of two parts. One part is the National Preserve. This means that the protection of nature is less here than in the other part of the area. This is also the case with hunting, for example allowed in the National Preserve area. The indigenous people are also allowed to live and work here, according to their tradition. This part can also be used commercially.
The other part of the area has national park status and is therefore more protected. There are a few facilities available to tourists here. The Wilderness Area is also located in the actual national park. This is the highest form of protection a US area can get. This area is located in the core of the park and is also the largest of its kind in the United States, this area is six times larger than Yellowstone National Park!
In addition, Wrangell St. Elias National Park is linked to the Canadian Kluane National Park a World Heritage Site.
The Wrangell St. Elias National Park is generally known for its records. Of the 16 highest mountains in the USA, nine are in this park alone. The world’s highest coastal mountains can also be found here in the Wrangell-St.-Elias National Park.
The volcano Mount Wrangell is 4,316 meters high and broke the last time of the year 1930th At 5,489 meters, Mount Saint Elias is the highest point in the park.
Several glaciers can be found in the mountains, including some very large ones, such as the Malaspina Glacier and the Hubbard Glacier. The latter is even 112 kilometers long!
Animals in the Wrangell-St.-Elias National Park
In the Wrangell-St. Elias National Park, animals naturally adapted to the cold conditions live. So you can find mountain goats, among other things. Even black bears and even some grizzly bears were counted here. Elk and caribou also live in the park. Sea lions and salmon can be found in and around the waters.
The larger mammal species most frequently represented are the dall sheep and the bison. Two herds of bison were established in Wrangell St. Elias National Park.
It is particularly nice to know that most animals are allowed to exist and live in the specially protected area without human intervention. Just as nature intended it to be.
Since most of the park area is under snow and consists of ice and rocks, the area has very little vegetation.
Incidentally, the Kennicott Mine is located here in Wrangell St. Elias National Park. This was once the richest copper mine on earth. Construction of the mine began in 1908 and was put into operation in 1911. Years later, in 1938, the Kennicott was shut down again.