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Ketchikan Expedition Black Bear Traitor's Cove

17 reviews

Excursion Overview

Explore Traitor's Cove for a glimpse at Alaskan wildlife

Among the old growth rainforest, pristine rivers, striking mountains, and soaring eagles is the powerful black bear. Explore a nook of the Last Frontier and witness the noble black bears feasting, frolicking, or slumbering in the wild.

Begin your Expedition Black Bear from Ketchikan Cruise Ship Dock.

Traitor's Cove is located 26 miles north of Ketchikan and approximately 60-70 minutes, one way via our 30' Aluminum Chambered Boat.

On the way to Traitor's Cove, your Six-Pack Licensed Captain will navigate through the Tongass Narrows, Clover Passage, and the temperate rainforest. You will observe stunning bays, sail past a majestic lighthouse, and have a chance to witness coastal wildlife. Quite often you will be able to observe the captivating behavior of whales breaching, revere bear trails and salmon streams, and spot bald eagles feasting on salmon leftovers from the bears foraging.

Once you reach the dock at Traitor's Cove, your adventure will continue as you drive 1.25 miles by private van to the Margaret Creek trailhead. From there, you will continue on a short 250-yard walk along a rainforest trail to the amazing bear viewing falls.

You will have a Captain/Guide that is well equipped and very familiar with travel in bear country, as well as knowledgeable about local flora, fauna, and wildlife that inhabit the rainforest.

Availability: This tour is only available in August.

Things You Need to Know


  • Roundtrip transportation
  • Binoculars for viewing opportunities


  • Must be at least 5 years of age
  • Appropriate clothing per weather
  • Tour requires 4 passengers at minimum to operate

Duration: 4.5 hours (Roundtrip from the cruise ship terminal.)

  • 60 minutes - boat ride through the Tongass Narrows
  • 5 minutes - van ride to the viewing platform trailhead
  • 15 minutes - walk down the trail to the Black Bear viewing platform
  • 90 minutes - viewing time at sights
  • 15 minutes - walk back to the van
  • 5 minutes - ride to a remote lake for viewing/possible bear sighting
  • 60 minutes - ride back to the cruise ship docks

Meeting Instructions:

  • This tour meets at Berths 1-4. Ward Cove guests will be picked up from Ward Cove. Fully detailed instructions are included on your finalized ticket vouchers.

ADA Accessibility of Tour:

  • This tour is limited mobility accessible. You must be able to walk up the gangplank, board vessel, and hike an uneven trail. Must be able to step up 2 stairs to the viewing platform. Please leave a comment during checkout if accommodations for equipment will be required on tour. If the operator is unaware beforehand of necessary accommodations, they may not be able to accommodate guests day-of.

Refund Policy:

  • You may cancel for any reason up to seven (7) days prior to the date of the tour for a full refund.
  • Please see our Refund Policy Page for complete details.

Frequently Asked Questions

The 30' Aluminum Chambered Boat can carry 6 passengers.

The maximum capacity for this tour is 6 guests. Our van on site is a 12-passenger van.

You will have a guide who is knowledgeable about the wildlife that inhabits the rainforest, and it is extremely likely that you will see bears. You may also see whales, salmon streams, and bald eagles on your way to the bear-viewing falls.

This is a limited-use area. The minimum age is 5 years old to participate in this excursion.

We recommend wearing clothes that can be layered. A lightweight shirt, sweater, and jacket will allow you to adapt to varying temperatures. Waterproof hiking shoes or sneakers are also recommended. Also, pack a hat and sunglasses.


Guest Reviews


17 total


Emily C

On Sep 2023

Alex was such a good guide! We had a fantastic time.

Donna G

On Sep 2023

We loved this excursion! I can't say enough about the beauty and majesty we got to experience seeing this part of Alaska. And OMG, lake at the end, I could have sat there all day just taking in the beauty. Alex was a great guide, very knowledgeable about the bears and always watching out for us. Very personalized and only 5 of us on the trip, great boat. Bears plus a bald eagle. I highly recommend.

Darren P

On Aug 2023

This was an excellent excursion! We saw the bears and our tour guide (Alex) was incredibly knowledgeable and friendly! We enjoyed the ride in the boat also. Alex answered all our questions and make our trip interesting and fun! Thank you :)

Patricia Z

On Aug 2023

Saw bears, beautiful area & great guide, Alex- so perfect day!

Dick L

On Aug 2023

I just returned from a 10 day Princess Alaska cruise. This was easily the best excursion I took. Our guide, and boat captain was a Ketchikan native. He was very knowledgeable and communicative. The best part was seeing a mother bear and her 2, 2 year old cubs. We were on a platform roughly 30 feet above the bears. It was an amazing experience. My only caveat is that this excursion is totally dependent on the bears being visible. There is obviously no guarantee that everyone will be as fortunate as we were. You are totally dependent on mother nature. I got many excellent photographs. As an aside I would recommend 1/1000 sec exposure. The bears move slowly, the fish in their mouth flop around. The bears and the weather cooperated. It was an excellent excursion. Worth every penny. I recommend it highly. It easily exceeded my expectations.


Best Price Guarantee!


Duration: 4.5 hours

Best Price Guarantee!

Duration: 4.5 hours

Min of 4 required to operate

Adult: $450.00

Child (5-12): $450.00

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