COVID-19 cases continue to grow in Alaska, with the virus reaching some of the farthest outposts of the 49th state. 

Brooks Camp, in the Katmai Park and Preserve, closed its doors to visitors after several members of the area’s residential community tested positive for the virus. 

The area is Katmai’s most popular destination, largely because of the bears that cluster in the nearby streams during the summer. It’s considered one of the best bear spotting areas in the state. 

As of July 27, only residents and other authorized people are allowed in Brooks Camp until Aug. 10, a press release from the National Park Service said. 

“The health and safety of employees, residents, volunteers, partners, and neighboring communities as well as park visitors, at Katmai National Park and Preserve is the Service's number one priority,” it said. 

Brooks Camp is typically accessed by plane. The Kodiak business that offers the most flights to Brooks Camp said visitors to the site have already peaked. 

“The peak time for Brooks is in July,” said Jennifer Culbertson, owner of Kodiak Island Expeditions. 

“They get another little bump in September, but the biggest time in July. That’s when we booked most of our trips.” 

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