The Government of NWT and Yukon have travel restrictions in effect that may impact or prevent you from travelling into Ivvavik National Park. For details on entry into the territories, including restrictions and mandatory self-isolation for residents, visit:
Ivvavik, meaning ‘a place for giving birth, a nursery,' in Inuvialuktun, the language of the Inuvialuit, is the first national park in Canada to be created as a result of an aboriginal land claim agreement. The park protects a portion of the calving grounds of the Porcupine caribou herd and represents the Northern Yukon and Mackenzie Delta natural regions.
A visit to Ivvavik National Park will be different in 2021. If you have a reservation, or are considering visiting the park, visit read the FAQ below. Ivvavik National Park is one of the most isolated parks in North America, and rescue services and facilities are limited. It is important for visitors to be self-sufficient, self-reliant, and capable of handling emergencies. Parks Canada has a search and rescue team based in Inuvik, however, rescue operations are dependent on weather, aircraft or staff mobilization response time. Additionally, due to the impacts of COVID-19, mountain and swift water rescue services are greatly reduced in the Western Arctic, and could take up to a week to access the park based on resource availability.
- More than 90 days prior to departure date = Full refund
- From 90 to 14 days prior to departure date = 50% refund
- Fewer than 14 days prior to departure date = No refund
- All hiking has to be done with a Parks Canada staff member
- Hiking will be limited to established routes and trails only.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. Who can enter the NWT to visit Base Camp?
A Protect NWT approval is required for anyone entering the NWT. At this time the Government of Northwest Territories is not permitting entry for leisure travel. With these restrictions in mind, Parks Canada is strongly encouraging all non-residents with an existing reservation or permit, or planning to book in 2021, to defer their trip and trip planning until 2022. For more information on entering the NWT, please visit: https://www.gov.nt.ca/covid-19/en/services/travel-self-isolation
2. Is Base Camp operating this season?
Base Camp will operate this season. Due to the current GNWT travel restrictions, Parks Canada is strongly encouraging all non-residents with an existing reservation or permit, or planning to book in 2021, to defer their trip and trip planning until 2022.
For NWT residents considering a trip to Base Camp this season, be advised that visitor safety services are limited. Visitors should be prepared for travel in remote terrain. Independent trips are not available in 2021.
3. What changes are expected at Base Camp in 2021?
Due to the ongoing COVID-19 impacts to operations and visitor safety services, Parks Canada has implemented COVID-19 guidelines and protocols for the safety of staff, cultural hosts and visitors. Visitor safety rescue services will be limited, as mountain and swift water rescue services are not currently available in the western Arctic.
All hiking outside the base camp perimeter must be accompanied by a Parks Canada staff member.
4.Can I defer my trip to 2022?
Yes, existing reservations for 2021 can be deferred to 2022. Parks Canada will offer existing reservation holders the first opportunity to re-book dates for 2022, prior to opening to the general public. We cannot transfer fees, and will need to refund then rebook existing reservations. Due to the evolving COVID-19 situation, Parks Canada strongly encourages visitors to obtain cancellation insurance for their trip.
5. When can I make my decision if I decide to cancel or defer, in order to receive a full refund for Base Camp bookings?
For visitors wanting to cancel their existing reservation, the normal refund policy will apply:
6. Will there be any fee increases if I defer my trip?
If deferred trips are re-booked for the 2022 season prior to January 1st, 2022, Parks Canada will honour the pricing that was paid in your original booking. All bookings made after January 1st, 2022 will be subject to the 2022 pricing rates. Parks Canada will honour the fees paid at the time of your original booking until January 1st 2022, however, we cannot guarantee space on specific trips after the dates are open to the general public.
7. What are the dates for 2022 Base Camp trips?
Parks Canada anticipates accepting new reservations for the 2022 season on April 1, 2021.
2022 Trip Dates:
June 28-July 2
5 Day Catered
5 Day Independent:
9 Day Catered:
8. Will the Herschel Island stop be available in 2022?
Parks Canada is scheduling trips with stops to Herschel Island in 2022. Due to the evolving COVID-19 situation, Parks Canada recognizers there may be restrictions or and other considerations for the 2022 season, and we will continue to monitor the guidelines put in place by territorial health authorities.
9. Will there be any changes to the types of activities we are allowed to do on the trip?
(hiking, interpretive activities, etc)
Due to limited search and rescue capacities, all visitors must be accompanied with a Parks Canada guide when hiking. Visitors will still be able to participate in socially distant interpretive activities with our Parks Canada staff and Inuvialuit Cultural Hosts.
10. What are the safety restrictions/considerations for the 2021 season?
Visitor Safety services in Ivvavik National Park will be impacted in 2021 due to COVID-19. Mountain and swift water rescue services are greatly reduced in the Western Arctic, and could take up to a week to access the park based on resource availability. Visitors must be self-sufficient, self-reliant, and capable of handling emergencies. Visitors should also be prepared to travel in remote terrain with quickly changing weather conditions.
To minimize risks for Base Camp visitors in 2021, the following measures will be in place:
11. Do I need to be accompanied by a Parks Canada staff member if I want to go fishing?
Yes, in order to ensure the safety of our visitors a Parks Canada staff member must accompany you while fishing as you will be outside of the perimeter of the bear fence. Guests will be required to carry, and supplied with, a throw rope for any activities near water. Guests will also be provided with PFDs.
12. Will we still be accompanied by Inuvialuit Cooks and Cultural Hosts?
Cooks and Cultural hosts from the community of Aklavik will still be accompanying visitors on all 2021 trips. To protect the health and safety of all visitors, staff, cooks and Cultural Hosts, everyone on the trip will be asked to follow health guidelines put in place by Protect NWT.
13. Do we have to wear masks the whole time? What COVID-19 precautions must we follow?
Throughout the trip, all staff and visitors will be required to follow evolving guidelines put in place by Protect NWT, such as: wearing masks, social distancing, and frequent hand washing or sanitizing. Visitors will be asked to wear masks in all common areas. You may take off your mask in your personal prospector tent, or while on social distanced outdoor hikes.
Visitors are encouraged to bring their own masks with them. Parks Canada will provide masks as needed.
14. Do we have to bring our own food, or will the trip still be catered?
All trips will be catered by cooks hired by Parks Canada. All cooks will be required to follow health guidelines put in place by Protect NWT. To do so, your meals will need to be personally served, rather than served in a buffet style.
Cooks will do their best to accommodate food allergies and sensitives. Visitors must inform Parks Canada at the time of booking of any dietary considerations.
15. Can I book a private trip to Base Camp with my friends?
Due to weather factors and other conservation programs that take place in Ivvavik National Park, typically we do not accommodate private bookings at basecamp outside of our offered trips. However, projects may shift year to year. When possible, Parks Canada will try to work with you and your group to consider certain requests. Private bookings will not be permitted this year due to various COVID-19 restrictions, however, we encourage you to check back in future years.
16. Are commercial operators running in Ivvavik this summer?
Parks Canada will continue to accept and review permit applications from commercial guides/outfitters to operate in Ivvavik National Park this summer.
Due to the current GNWT travel restrictions, Parks Canada is strongly encouraging all non-residents with an existing reservation or permit, or planning to book in 2021, to defer their trip and trip planning until 2022.
17. Are there restrictions for paddling the Firth River?
For individual parties (not commercial guided), Parks Canada is implementing a two raft per party minimum to maximize a group’s ability to self-rescue. Each party will be required to carry a SEND (satellite emergency notification device).
18. If I defer my rafting trip, will I receive the same trip dates?
Parks Canada will try to allot you the same trip dates when we can. However, as rafting trips require long term pre-planning, we do already have bookings for future seasons.
Parks Canada will work with you on an individual basis to try and make sure you receive reservation dates that work for you and your group.
19. How will accommodations be allocated for single visitors or small groups who are not travelling with their “bubble”?
Parks Canada will make every effort to accommodate single and couple travellers to keep “bubbles” separated in accommodations. Single travellers and couples will be allocated tents with double beds, and larger groups in tents with bunk beds. When making a reservation, please advise if any members in your party are not part of your “bubble”.
20. Who can I contact regarding canceling or deferring my trip to 2022?
A Parks Canada representative can assist you with rebooking or canceling by contacting firstname.lastname@example.org or 1-867-777-8800. Please have your original booking information available.
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