Bears may be
seen almost anywhere in the Yakutat area. Most commonly, bears
will be near their source of food such as near rivers & along the
shorelines. Always remember that they are wild animals and
keep your distance, especially around females with cubs. Moose also
frequent the Yakutat area. They tend to like the meadows & boggy
areas. Cow moose with calves can be even more aggressive than bears
so never get too close.
In the salt water sea otters, seals, whales, sea lions, and porpoise
are common sights. Along the rivers & inland there can be river
otters, wolves, and you will see lots of eagles! Use a telephoto to
obtain your memorable photo.
For additional wildlife opportunities charter a boat on Yakutat Bay
or hire a river guide. Getting away from the road system while
gaining some safety space from a boat is a great idea. Wildlife are
also often visible from the air while on a sightseeing flight or you
can out on an ATV tour for more opportunity.
Each spring and fall
outstanding photographic opportunities are offered by huge
migrations of shorebirds, raptors, and waterfowl that pass along
the coast near Yakutat.
Use binoculars or spotting scopes to avoid disturbing the birds.
All summer bald eagles are prevalent along the salt water shores
and the rivers. Keep your eyes open to see the giant nests made
by the nesting pairs that are used year after year.
Plan your trip around the annual Yakutat Tern Festival event (www.yakutatternfestival.org)
to take advantage of the additional events planned for visitors
and locals alike. Fieldtrips, glacier cruise, cultural dance
performance, local foods, and more.
Back in areas accessible in Yakutat,
there are plenty of other beaches to comb including Ocean Cape
with the best tidepools ever! You can rent a kayak or skiff to
access the islands in Monti Bay or rent a fat-tire bike to get
easily further down the beach (Ross Outdoor Adventures).
Beach is an expansive ocean beach along Yakutat Bay. After
storms, it is sometimes possible to find Japanese glass fishing
floats. For the more serious beachcomber, a short flight from
Yakutat to the Southeast will drop you in to remote ocean
beaches where you are likely to find all sorts of treasure.
Cannon Beach is named for the World War II cannons that were
installed to protect the area.
Book a charter boat
to take you to the face of Hubbard Glacier & enjoy great scenery
along the route. Bears are often seen along the shores or on high
mountain meadows. Near the glacier listen to ice in the water-it’s
electric! You may see ice calve from the glacier. The knowledgeable
charter captains will fill you in with stories & history of the
View all the
glaciers of the area on flight seeing excursion or drive the road to
the Dangerous River and hike the short distance to Harlequin Lake.
The lake is fed by Yakutat Glacier & usually sports many wonderful
blue icebergs. Why not rent kayaks, drive them to the Dangerous
River bridge, & use our carts to transport to the lake for an
following trails are ready for hikers in Yakutat. Mountain Lake
Trail, Harlequin Lake Trail, Russell Fiord Trail, Situk Lake
Trail, Situk River Trail, Maggie John (Lower Situk) Trail, Fish
Train Trail, and Totem Trail (see detailed information at
www.seatrails.org/com_yakutat) Yakutat is also the jumping off point
for accessing the
UNESCO Kluane/Wrangell-St. Elias/Glacier Bay/Tatshenshini-Alsek World
Heritage Site which surrounds Yakutat, the
Tongass National Forest (largest National Forest),
Wrangell-Saint Elias National Park and Preserve (largest National
Park and home to Mount St. Elias-the second highest peak in the United
States), and a portion of
Glacier Bay National Park.
Enjoy the natural beauty of the bays back
of Yakutat Bay from the quiet of a kayak! Launch from the shore of
Leonard’s Landing to enjoy the view of the towering mountains, watch
for wildlife along the shores & in the bay. Take your lunch along,
eat it on a deserted beach. Dig for some clams or do a little
Transport the kayaks to many other great
locations in Yakutat for even more scenery. Launch at the Ankau
bridge for exploration of the salt water lagoons, slide into Tawah
Creek & paddle through beautiful vegetation on the wide expanse of
water, take the kayaks down the trail into Russell Fjord, or drive
to the Dangerous River & launch in Harlequin Lake to paddle among
the ever present icebergs.
Sea kayaks may be rented for overnight
trips & an inflatable double kayak is now available to rent in order
to transport by air taxi for wilderness trips.
With spectacular beauty in every direction, be sure your camera
has enough space for all the photographs you will want to take.
You may rent
or charter a boat to take you into the bay, rent a vehicle to
reach the places accessible by road, and follow the hiking
trails to find the rest. See the information on wildlife
viewing, birding, Wrangell-St. Elias National park, and Tongass
National Forest for additional information on photography
“Fat-tire” bikes are now available
for rent in Yakutat. Use for economic transportation, tour the
area, or ride the beaches! See link to Ross Outdoor Adventure on
our links page for contact information.
Yakutat has become known for extreme surfing in both winter and
summer. Surfing gear is available for rent from the local surf
shop, Icy Waves (see trip planning for link and contact info).
The surf shop has a website where tee shirts imprinted with “The
Far North Shore” may be purchased. The shop proprietors are also
an excellent source of more details about Yakutat surfing
Flight seeing is available through Yakutat
Coastal Airlines. These flights are custom charters that can
include flying northwest up Yakutat Bay over the spectacular
Hubbard Glacier with a return down Russell Fjord, along the
mountains to the southeast, or anywhere you would like to go.
Wildlife is also visible from the low altitude. It is an
excellent way to utilize a partial day in Yakutat.
that protected the area during WWII, an old military tank, WWII
era hangar (home of a future WWII aviation museum), the fish
train, and more as you tour Yakutat.
Life in Yakutat is rich with the culture of the Native people of
the area. Here the elders share their knowledge and wisdom
through storytelling in the local community gathering place.
Hear their story and see the traditional dress regalia of the Tlingit people. Ask about opportunities to hear elders
storytellers or see the local Tlingit dance group perform when you make