The Bears of Admiralty Island (with optional island Kayak)
An unforgettable wildlife viewing experience! With the world’s highest concentration of brown bear, Admiralty Island is known as the “Fortress of the Bears.” From Pack Creek to Windfall Harbor Bear Sanctuary, the bear viewing options are endless!
Book this tour soon – permits are limited and sell out early!
Your guide will greet you, outfit you and provide a safety briefing. Then you will begin with fabulous flightseeing as you wing your way through the fjords of Southeast Alaska to your viewing location.
From here, you’ll kayak to either Pack Creek or Windfall Harbor, both prime brown bear viewing areas. These world-class wildlife viewing destinations provide protected habitat for brown bears while affording visitors unique opportunities to view and photograph wildlife.
Brown bear, eagles and other wildlife abound! You will see bear fishing for salmon and/or eating berries, shellfish or meadow grasses. Eagles are extraordinarily abundant along the shoreline, and the cries of loons haunt Admiralty’s lakes. This is truly one of the gems of Southeast Alaska.
Bear Viewing at Pack Creek includes a kayak from Windfall Island to Pack Creek, a total roundtrip paddling distance of about two miles. Of the two primary bear-viewing areas at Pack Creek, the most accessible is a sandy spit of land right at the mouth of the creek, a short beach hike from where floatplanes land and boats tie up. Slightly more challenging is a beautiful one-mile trail through an old-growth rain forest to a viewing tower. The tower has room for eight people and is an excellent place to watch bears as they roam directly below you.
Bear viewing at Windfall Harbor includes a kayak from Staunch Point. This is one of the most scenic paddling trips we offer with a total roundtrip paddling distance of about five miles. You’ll kayak along the remote coastline of Admiralty Island looking for bears while also keeping watch for marine wildlife in the ocean waters. Windfall Harbor is even more remote and rugged than Pack Creek, as there are no designated structures from which to view wildlife once you get there. You are in true bear country and our guides have several “secret locations” to pull kayaks ashore for scenic breaks and bear viewing
- Must be fit enough to kayak/hike a few miles through the wilderness
- For safety reasons, weight is limited to 250 lbs or less
- To reserve this tour you will need to provide your weights, shoe and outer gear sizes, and any allergies or medical conditions
- All bear viewing safety restrictions must be followed. All food must be stored in bear-proof lockers at the entrance site, guests must stay with their group, gear and personal belongings may not be left unattended
Trip Activities: Floatplane flightseeing, ocean kayaking, bear and wildlife viewing
Duration: About 8 hours including round trip transportation from the cruise ship harbor
Tour Operator Provides: Professional guide, required permits, transportation from/to cruise ship harbor, round trip air transportation to/from the kayaking/viewing location, all necessary paddling equipment, tandem kayaks, rain jacket and pants, rubber boots, hearty snack and bottled water
You Bring: Dress in layers, sunscreen and sunglasses
- The best bear viewing is during the salmon spawning season of July and August or late May and June during brown bear mating season.
- The number of bears a group sees varies greatly, but most visitors see at least one bear. Please note, bear sightings are not guaranteed. This is wild Alaska!
- This trip operates in all safe weather conditions.
- Kayaks can accommodate maximum torso (waist-chest) diameter of 55 inches (140cm), maximum weight limit is 600lbs (272kg) for double kayaks. People taller than 6’2″ (188cm) have a hard time operating the rudder because the pedals only adjust to a certain maximum distance. However, people as tall as 6’8″ have been able to paddle our kayaks.
- Payment is due at the time of reservation. Refunds provided only if trip is cancelled by the tour operator.