Becharof National Wildlife Refuge  

  • Size: 1.2 million acres
  • Established: 1980 Alaska National Interest Lands Conservation Act

This Refuge boasts the largest lake in the entire National Wildlife Refuge system. Thirty-five miles long, 15 miles wide, Becharof Lake is 600 feet deep in places. From this huge lake and its watershed comes a tsunami of salmon: an estimated six million adult salmon a year, including the second largest sockeye salmon run in the world.

As with other refuges on the Aleutian Chain, Becharof has its share of mountains and volcanoes. Mt. Peulik is a 4,800-foot volcano whose lava flows reach the shores of Becharof Lake. This is another of Alaska’s remote refuges, reachable only by plane or boat, with only a handful of visitors from outside the area each year.