Utqiaġvik is the northernmost community in the United States and is located in the Arctic Circle on the Chuckchi and Beaufort Sea coast. It is the largest village on the Arctic Slope with around 4,212 residents.
Utqiaġvik’s climate is cold and dry; winter weather can be extreme with the combination of the below zero temperatures and wind. The annual precipitation is 4.5 inches.
An important archaeological and anthropological site discovered in Utqiaġvik is the Birnick site, which contains dwelling mounds of a culture believed to have existed between 500-900 A.D. These scientific discoveries are further evidence of the prehistoric culture that populated Alaska’s northernmost coast.
Many in Utqiaġvik continue to rely on subsistence hunting, fishing and whaling. Although Utqiaġvik is a modern community, the traditional bearded seal skin boats, also known as umiaq, continue to be used today for hunting bowhead whales.
Community amenities include three primary grocery stores, a Wells Fargo branch, a handful of restaurants, and several churches.