Sheenjek River


The Sheenjek River, from its headwaters in the glaciers of the Romanzof Mountains to its mouth on the Porcupine River, is an area of exceptional scenic beauty and primitive characteristics. The river spans three distinct physiographic provinces, starting with its headwaters in an alpine region on the south slope of the Brooks Range. From the rugged, steep tundra valleys of the alpine zone the river flows into a piedmont area of rolling hills with streambank borders of willow, poplar, spruce, and birch. Away from the river, arctic tundra dominates the landscape. Below the piedmont zone the river enters the upper reaches of the Yukon Flats. Here, the river meanders broadly. Along the Sheenjek’s entire length are undisturbed examples of complete ecological communities exactly as nature has created them.

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Designated Reach

December 2, 1980. The segment within the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.

Outstandingly Remarkable Values

Preliminary Finding

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is in the process of determining all the “outstandingly remarkable values” of the Sheenjek River. Preliminarily, through Comprehensive Conservation Plans and additional agency reviews, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has found these values as likely on the river: recreation, geology, fish, wildlife, cultural (prehistoric), and subsistence. A process is underway with public involvement in formally identifying and describing the outstanding values of this river. Ongoing planning efforts may further identify or clarify outstandingly remarkable values on this river. 


Wild — 191 miles; Total — 191 miles.
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