While most of the current 411 United States National Park Service units are accessible by car, or commercial plane and boat there are 16 NPS units in Alaska where you must charter a bush plane / air taxi to actually visit the park unit. This is a guide on how to do that.
Key elements of the Alaska Fly-In Guide
1. Listing of the 16 Fly-In units with a photo of each unit
2. Map images and Google Map location links for key Fly-In destinations
3. NPS (National Park Service) links for approved Commercial Services - Air Taxis for each unit
4. Air Taxi services used by NPTC (National Park Travelers Club) members with links
5. NPTC (National Park Travelers Club) Member Trip Report links - and member’s photo links
6. List of Alaska Airports commonly used by Air Taxis in Alaska with Google map links.
7. NPTC boundaries guide for the Fly-In parks - Most remote park Visitor Centers are not located within the remote park boundaries.
The Guide is organized by park alphabetically, members may want to use this airport arrangement for planning purposes. Links to references either in this document or on the World Wide Web will are underlined and bolded.
This guide is subject to constant changes by air taxi companies and the National Park Service. This is mainly a reference of website links for the 16 fly-in parks and a summary of links referencing what other members have done in the past to access these units.
Air taxis and scheduled tour operators are normally, but not always, required for the 16 “fly-in” parks and preserves in Alaska. In planning these trips, it is important to build in extra “weather days.” Weather is a significant factor that can determine whether small bush planes can land into the remote Alaska parks. Backup flights from other locations can also be a possibility. Success often depends on close and frequent contact with your pilot and airlines prior to your planned flight. Air taxis are currently charging about $400-$600 per hour, and the 16 landings can often require 2 to 6 hours of flying time. Members need to understand fees, plane seating configurations, and weight limitations. A plane with a seating for four with a limitation of 800 pounds can take four passengers each under 200 pounds, but can only carry three passengers if each weighs, for example, 225 pounds.
Specific seating arrangements may make a difference, and if the co-pilot seat is desired you may need to make your request ahead of time.
The following NPS website lists air taxis authorized to take persons into the Alaska park units.
"The businesses listed in this Directory are authorized to offer certain specific goods and services to park visitors, which are not provided by National Park Service personnel. By welcoming the private sector as a partner in park operations, the National Park Service broadens the economic base of the region in general and the communities surrounding the parks in particular."