Whales Kayaking Trip
Our Whales! trips are our most popular and longest-running — we have been leading them for over 25 years. They range from a one day paddle with the whales of Point Adolphus to a week-long camping adventure in Icy Strait.
Paddling along the shores of Chichagof Island, northernmost of the major Inside Passage islands, our Whales! trips offer you the opportunity to view and be amazed by Stellar Sea lions, harbor seals and of course, the Humpback whales that congregate here to feed every summer. There is nothing like being at water level with these magnificent beings!
Occasionally Humpback whales fully breach out of the water, in commanding displays of acrobatic power. Observing these most dramatic marine mammals adds an exclamation point to any Southeast Alaska adventure — especially when viewed from a kayak!
Expedition Details — Whales! [WH]
Location: Pt. Adolphus, Icy Strait
Duration: Expeditions of two to seven days. Day trips are available. Custom trips by arrangement.
Paddle Distance: 5-20 miles.
Activities: Paddling, fishing, photography, whale watching, rain forest hikes.
Highlights: Watching, photographing, and listening to humpback whales, from our camp and kayaks. We'll also see other marine wildlife, such as stellar sea lions, porpoises and orcas (killer whales), and we can fish for salmon on longer trips.
Schedule and Prices: see Schedule for currently available trips and prices.
Book Your Trip: go to Trip Reservations to book your trip today, or call 1-800-KAYAKER!
Trip Description — Whales! [WH]
We start with a short boat ride across Icy Strait to Point Adolphus. From the deep forested inlets of Chichagof Island to the 1,000 foot depths of Icy Strait, this is a sea kayaking paradise of immense scale and diversity. Giant trees along the shore support bald eagles' nests, sometimes up to a ton in size, and over 80 kinds of moss hang from tree branches and thickly carpet the forest floor. Brown bears forage on the abundance of berries while offshore our paddling is often punctuated by sightings of the spectacular Humpback whale.
For trips longer than one day our first campsite is the mouth of a river on the northern shore of Chichagof. During our time in this secluded bay we may paddle up the river, fish for the plentiful trout, explore the forest wilderness and view the large flocks of geese and ducks here.
We next paddle along a shoreline of alternating sandy beaches and rock cliffs. About eight leisurely miles brings us to our camp in the vicinity of Point Adolphus, a meeting place of currents flowing around Chichagof Island into the Inside Passage. This nutrient rich confluence feeds an abundance of marine life from tiny barnacles to giant whales.
Otters, seals, porpoise, sea lions and whales swim past our camp in noisy groups. For their part, these marine mammals mainly ignore us as we paddle past—or accept us and go about their business. Summer is the time for them to stock up on the nutrients that will carry them through the long winter. We respect them and do not crowd them; our greatest pleasure is to share these creatures' space without disrupting their lives.
Tide pool explorations, rain forest treks, and gourmet dinners among the tumbled boulders at our camp fill our days and nights at Point Adolphus. It is not uncommon to hear humpbacks slapping the water and hear their explosive breath from our tents at night. The impression is a lasting one, but only one of many you'll take home from this great kayaking adventure!
Request Information for additional details about this trip! Sample itineraries are available for our 3-day, 5-day, and 7-day Whales! Expeditions.