2 Free Issues and 3 Free Gifts!
Full Name:
Address 1:
Address 2:
Zip Code:
Email: (required)
If I like it and decide to continue, I'll pay just $12.00, and receive a full one-year subscription (9 issues in all), a 73% savings off the newsstand price! If for any reason I decide not to continue, I'll write "cancel" on the invoice and owe nothing.
Your subscription includes 3 FREE downloadable booklets.
Or click here to pay now and get 2 extra issues
Offer valid in US only.

Also on

Enter Zip Code

Backpacker Magazine – November/December 2005

Save or Splurge: Kayak Southeast Alaska

Tour the wildlife menagerie that is southeast Alaska on two kayak trips

by: Tracy Ross

PAGE 1 2


What you get

A 3-hour cruise aboard a 40-foot charter boat gives you a taste of what's coming: You whoosh past Resurrection Bay's hanging glaciers, needle-sharp mountains, and charred-black sea stacks en route to Holgate Glacier, in Kenai Fjords National Park's sheltered Aialik Bay. You pass islands where 50,000 seabirds, including horned puffins and black-legged kittiwakes, gather to raise babies and dive-bomb distracted fish. For the next 3 days, you'll paddle past sea lion rookeries, dodge "bergie bits" (floating chunks of iceberg), and fall asleep to the groans of ancient glaciers. The price covers tents, hearty food, kayaks, the charter, guides, gear, and instruction. Bring a sleeping bag and a bottle of wine.

Why It's Cool

The Harding Icefield is a 300-square-mile Ice Age remnant responsible for Kenai Fjords' wilderness of craggy cirques, deep-water valleys, and 40-plus hanging and tidewater glaciers. The walls of ice creep down through rain forest to shed 200-foot-high slabs of ice into a sea churning with seals and salmon. From your basecamp at Holgate Arm, you'll paddle 6 to 7 miles a day, poking around offshore rock formations and ambling into hidden white-sand coves and protected lagoons where 30-ton humpbacks have been known to surface under kayakers and "kiss" their boats. You'll hike glacier moraines in search of black bears and wolverines, then snack on cream-cheese-and-salmon pizza while you glass Dall sheep tiptoeing on the surrounding cliffs. Wildlife sightings or not, you're guaranteed an intact-wilderness experience, where you can ride the tides into a world that is as it was a thousand years ago.

How To Do It

Sunny Cove Sea Kayaking Company: (907) 224-8810;

PAGE 1 2

Subscribe to Backpacker magazine
Sign up for our free weekly e-newsletter
Address 1:
Address 2:
Email (req):

Reader Rating: -


Your rating:
Your Name:


My Profile Join Now

Most recent threads

Trailhead Register
Stop me if you've heard this...
Posted On: Jul 25, 2014
Submitted By: desert dweller
Do you use a PLB?
Posted On: Jul 25, 2014
Submitted By: High_Sierra_Fan
View all Gear
Find a retailer

Special sections - Expert handbooks for key trails, techniques and gear

Check out Montana in Warren Miller's Ticket to Ride
Warren Miller athletes charge hard and reflect on Big Sky country, their love for this space and the immense energy allotted to the people who reside in Montana.

Boost Your Apps
Add powerful tools and exclusive maps to your BACKPACKER apps through our partnership with Trimble Outdoors.

Carry the Best Maps
With BACKPACKER PRO Maps, get life-list destinations and local trips on adventure-ready waterproof myTopo paper.

FREE Rocky Mountain Trip Planner
Sign up for a free Rocky Mountain National Park trip planning kit from our sister site

Follow BackpackerMag on Twitter Follow Backpacker on Facebook
Get 2 FREE Trial Issues and 3 FREE GIFTS
Survival Skills 101 • Eat Better
The Best Trails in America
YES! Please send me my FREE trial issues of Backpacker
and my 3 FREE downloadable booklets.
Full Name:
Address 1:
Zip Code:
Address 2:
Email (required):
Free trial offer valid for US subscribers only. Canadian subscriptions | International subscriptions