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Lands FAQ

How much land does Ahtna own?

Currently, Ahtna owns 1.64 million surface and subsurface acres and an additional 63,000 acres of subsurface lands out of an original ANCSA entitlement of 1.77 million acres. Ahtna lands stretch from Chitina to Mentasta along the Copper River. Ahtna lands are also adjacent to the Klutina River and the Gulkana River from MP 146 Richardson Highway to its confluence with the Copper River. Ahtna also owns land in the Cantwell area. Ahtna’s Cantwell lands are along the first 18.5 miles of the Denali Highway west of Cantwell. When ANCSA selections are complete, Cantwell lands will stretch from MP 192 Parks Highway to MP 230.5 Parks Highway, though there are some non-Ahtna inholdings in the area. Currently, MP 198.25 to MP 199.75 and MP 200.5 to MP 207 Parks Highway are still in selection status and, as such, are still public lands.

What are Ahtna traditional use lands?

These are lands that were traditionally used by the Ahtna people prior to the arrival of Western cultures, covering about 41,000 square miles in Alaska’s southcentral interior. Ahtna’s traditional use lands extend from the U.S./Canada border in the east to Denali National Park in the west, between the Alaska Range and the Chugach Mountains. The traditional Ahtna lands encompass an area roughly the size of the state of Ohio.

Where is the Ahtna region?
Map of the state of Alaska with the Ahtna region highlighted.

The Ahtna region is located in the southcentral interior of Alaska. The region is the light green section of the map shown.

What do I need to know if I am visiting Ahtna lands?

Ahtna lands are privately-owned and requires purchase of a land use permit for activities such as camping, land crossing, parking, fishing and general recreation. Permits are issued for predator control (bear, wolf and coyotes) and using one of Ahtna’s allowed hunting guides allows you to hunt sheep and moose; all other hunting, however, is strictly prohibited.

The purchase of an Ahtna land permit helps support important programs to help maintain the lands for enjoyment by current and future generations including moose browse projects, vegetation and wildlife nutrition programs and fire fuel breaks to name a few. Use of Ahtna lands without a permit is considered trespass under Alaska State law. Download the Ahtna map app before visiting the region to help determine who owns the land you are exploring.

Permits can be purchased on this site under the “Permits” section. Day-use and overnight-camping permits may also be purchased at select pay stations located on Ahtna land. If you have additional questions or concerns, please contact the Ahtna Land Department at 907-822-3476 or landdepartment@ahtna.net.

What is there to do in the Ahtna Region?

Whether you’re a first-time or frequent visitor, there are many recreational activities to do here, such as, fishing for our world-renowned Copper River red salmon, hiking, camping, bird watching, ATV riding, or even snowmobiling in the winter months. Please remember that any permissible use of Ahtna lands will require a Land Use permit.

To find out more about what you can do in the Ahtna Region, please visit the Copper Valley Chamber of Commerce website at www.coppervalleychamber.com or phone the chamber at 907-822-5553.

Can I hunt on Ahtna lands?

Ahtna offers predator-control permits for hunting bear, wolf and coyotes. Using one of Ahtna’s allowed hunting guides allows you to hunt sheep and moose. All other hunting is not allowed on Ahtna lands, but you can buy a permit to cross Ahtna lands to reach other hunting grounds on public lands.

Can I fish on Ahtna lands?

Fishing is the number-one recreational use of Ahtna lands. People travel to the Ahtna Region from all over Alaska, other states and around the world for our renowned Copper River red salmon. The Klutina and Gulkana Rivers also support a king salmon fishery.

The most popular fishery in the Ahtna Region is the Chitina dipnet fishery, with over 10,000 personal-subsistence dipnet permits issued annually for this area alone. The Alaska Department of Fish and Game has a helpful video on its website on how to dipnet at Chitina.

*Please note that Chitina Village lands are owned by Chitina Native Corporation, which is separate from Ahtna and will require a permit for use of its lands. Popular dipnetting areas on Chitina Village lands are at O’Brien Creek and Salmon Point. Both areas have pay stations for day use and camping permits. Ahtna pay stations are located at Haley and Eskilida Creeks south of O’Brien Creek, and at the Kotsina River on the southwest corner of the Copper River Bridge.

Fishing for grayling and Dolly Varden char is available in the Copper River Basin. Fly fishing for grayling and Dolly Varden char is popular in the Cantwell area.

What are ANCSA 17B easements and where are they located on Ahtna lands?

17B easements are right of ways reserved across privately owned Native corporation lands. Travel on a 17B easement is allowed for all members of the general public, but use of the land adjacent to it, which is owned by the respective Native corporation, is not. Land-use permits are required for the use of lands adjacent to these easements.

To locate 17B easements within the Ahtna Region, please contact the Bureau of Land Management Glennallen field office at (907) 822-3217 or visit www.blm.gov. For specific trail information please call Ahtna at (907) 822-3476

What happens if I trespass on Ahtna lands?

Ahtna lands are considered private property under Alaska statute. Any non-authorized use on Ahtna lands will be considered trespass and prosecuted to the full extent of the law.

Does Ahtna allow small-scale mining or gold panning on Ahtna lands?

Ahtna’s lands are not open to personal-use mining or gold panning. Ahtna is open for commercial mining on Ahtna lands. Various mineral exploration and mining companies need to meet certain criteria prior to exploration activities. If you have additional questions or concerns, please contact the Ahtna Land Department at (907) 822-3476 or landdepartment@ahtna.net.

What are Ahtna’s policies regarding scientific studies?

Generally, Ahtna will issue a special-use permit to government agencies and nonprofit organizations on a case-by-case basis to conduct scientific studies on Ahtna lands with certain restrictions and data-sharing requirements.

Where can I find maps of the Ahtna Region?

Maps of the Ahtna Region can be obtained in person at the Land Department office during normal business hours, at various kiosks throughout the Ahtna Region, or ordered through the Ahtna Land Department. The Ahtna Land Department is located at our corporate headquarters in Glennallen at MP 115 Richardson Highway. You can also utilize our Ahtna map app while on the go and our interactive online land status map.

Can I film on Ahtna lands?

To record film or video on Ahtna lands for commercial purposes, a filmmaker or production company needs the expressed written permission of Ahtna, Inc. In 2006, portions of the movie Into the Wild was filmed on Ahtna lands near Cantwell. Also, during the summer of 2013, film crews from two reality television shows taped on Ahtna lands.