Ikpikpuk River

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Quick Facts

  • Location: 70 ° 49' 25" N, 154 ° 18' 9" W
  • Region: North Slope
  • Uses:


formed by Kigalik River and Maybe Creek, at 692045N1544230W, flows N to Smith Bay, Arctic Plain. 195 miles long.

Eskimo name (Ikpikpak) meaning "big cliff or bank," originally reported by Lieutenant Ray (1885, p. 55, map), U.S. Army (USA), as Ikpikpun and Ikpikpung and described as the "Third large river east of Point Barrow." Ensign W. L. Howard, U.S. Navy (USN), traveled along this stream on his trip from the Kobuk River to Point Barrow in the spring of 1886, and reported the Eskimo name as Ikpikpuk, although he also shows the name "Ik-pik-pung River" for a tributary of this stream (Stoney, 1900, p. 73 and map facing p. 66). Leffingwell (1919, p. 93, 96), U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), explains that Ikpikpungme is a locative form meaning "at the Ikpikpuk." Lieutenant G. N. Stoney, U.S. Navy (USN), attempted to rename this stream Chipp River, but the Board on Geographic Names (BGN) reapplied the Chipp River to one of the two distributaries of the Ikpikpuk in 1925.



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