Denali Park – The Teklanika Campground, located at Mile 29 of the Denali Park Road, will be temporarily closed beginning on Monday, August 30. Several grizzly bears have been frequenting the Teklanika area for the past month, particularly a subadult that has been seen in and around the Teklanika campground and has displayed behavior that warrants wildlife management action, including numerous close encounters with park visitors. None of these bears were involved in the recent bear attack that took place 30 miles to the west of the Teklanika area.
The campground closure will initially last for seven days while the park’s wildlife team conducts operations to capture the subadult grizzly. A culvert trap will be placed in the campground with the intent to capture and attach a radio collar to the bear, which will then be released on site. The on-site release occurs in conjunction with negative stimuli such as cracker shells and bean bag rounds fired from a shotgun, barking dogs, and yelling park staff. This creates a negative association for the bear with this location, and is known as a “hard release”. For the safety of visitors, park staff, and the bear, the campground will need to remain closed for the duration of this operation.
Park managers will reassess on Friday, September 3. Depending upon the success of the operation, the Teklanika Campground may reopen as early as Monday, September 6. If a longer closure is necessary the NPS will close the campground for the remainder of the season, as it is already scheduled to close for the winter in mid-September.
Anyone who has existing Teklanika Campground reservations between August 30 and September 5 should contact 800-622-7275 for more information. Please visit Denali National Park online for more information about current closures.