General information

Atqasuk is located inland from the Arctic Ocean on the Meade River about 60 miles southwest of Utqiagvik. Atqasuk has long been established as a hunting and fishing ground. Abandoned sod houses, an old cellar and a gravesite near the village provide evidence of early settlement here.

During World War II, coal was mined in the community and freighted to Utqiagvik. During the next 10 years, the village existed under the name of Meade River.

Although the population dwindled in the 1960s, former residents moved back to the community in the 1970s and re-established the village under the name of Atqasuk. The village was incorporated as a second-class city in 1982.


Atqasuk had a population of about 248 residents in 2015 and a work force of 105 in 2014 according to the State of Alaska’s Employment Statistics. Inupiat comprise over 92.3 percent of the population. Atqasuk’s economy is largely based on subsistence caribou hunting and fishing. Fish in the Meade River include grayling, burbot, salmon, and whitefish. Local game includes caribou, bears, ptarmigan, ducks, geese and the occasional musk-ox.

In 2014, the public sector employed 87 percent of all workers. Some residents also produce arts and crafts for sale including masks, mittens, dolls, yo-yos, ulus and parkas.

Quality of Life

The North Slope Borough provides Atqasuk with public electricity and water wastewater services. The NSB also provides trash pick-up services.

Atqasuk has a public safety building and a fire station equipped with fire engines and an ambulance. A health clinic, staffed by community health aides, is open during the day and is available for emergencies around the clock.

The Meade River School offers public education from pre-school to grade 12 and adult basic education. Communications include phone, mail, public radio, internet and cable television.

The village corporation, Atqasuk Corporation, owns a grocery and merchandise store which sells food, clothing, first-aid supplies, cameras, film and hardware. Propane, gas, diesel and motor oil are also available. Atqasuk bans the sale and importation of alcoholic beverages.

Daily scheduled flight from Utqiagvik provides passenger and cargo service to Atqasuk.



City of Atqasuk
PO Box 91119
Atqasuk, AK 99791
Phone Number: (907) 633-6811

Atqasuk Inupiat Corporation
PO Box 91021
Atqasuk, AK 99791
Phone Number: (907) 633-6414

Native Village of Atqasuk
PO Box 91108
Atqasuk, AK 99791
Phone Number: (907) 633-2575

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