Take a ride on a unique, exciting rigid-hull inflatable vessel. It's an open motorized ocean raft called a Seahawk, which locals refer to as the banana boat. Your captain will point out marine life and interesting features along the coast of Clover Passage, including a bald eagle's nest, while you travel out to Betton Island. This is a country rich with wildlife and along the route, you may have the opportunity to observe whales, Steller sea lions, harbor seals, bald eagles, and migrating seabirds.
Landing at a beautiful secluded beach you will be instructed to follow your guide through the ancient Tongass National Forest, which is the nation's largest national forest at almost 17 million acres (almost 5.7 million acres have been designated as wilderness). Home to a diverse cross-section of animals including bears, eagles, salmon, sandhill cranes, wolves, and trumpeter swans, you will learn about the many amazing botanical species native to this region. Your guide will also be able to point out the wonderful Western red cedars and yellow cedars that early Natives depended on for spiritual enrichment, shelter, and transportation. The trail you will be taking is mostly boardwalk, well-maintained, and about one mile in length. You will also have the opportunity to learn about beach life that is present during your visit. You may see starfish or sea cucumber, or learn how the natives used the seaweed in their daily lives.
During your stay at the island, you'll enjoy an Alaska-style snack by the campfire and take in the wonderful vistas, before your return trip to Ketchikan.
Included: Rain gear, life jacket, and snacks.
Please note: This tour is not accessible to guests in wheelchairs or with severe walking difficulties. Guests need to be able to climb a 10-step ladder to get in/out of the Seahawk vessel.
Duration: 4 hours (Roundtrip from cruise ship terminal.)
- Roundtrip transportation
- Lifejacket, rain gear (pants, jacket, and boots)
- Snacks consisting of smoked salmon, cheese, & crackers
- Minimum Weight: 40lbs
- Moderate physical activity is required.
Duration: 4 hours. Tour times below are approximate:
- 60 minutes - roundtrip narrated transfer to Knudson Cove Marina
- 15 minutes - orientation, risk acknowledgement forms
- 15 minutes - walk down to dock and load into Seahawk vessel
- 2 hours - boat ride, unload on Orca Beach, guided nature walk and snack around the campfire
- 30 minutes - sightseeing back to Knudson Cove Marina
- This tour meets at the Liquid Sunshine Rain Gauge. If your ship docks at Ward Cove, you will be picked up there and you do not need to take the shuttle. Fully detailed instructions are included on your finalized ticket vouchers.
ADA Accessibility of Tour:
- This tour is not wheelchair or limited mobility accessible.
What type of boat is a Seahawk?
A Seahawk is a 24 person rigid, hulled, inflatable jet boat which allows you to have an exhilarating ride over to Betton Island and have the chance to see some great wildlife along the way.
Do I have to go on the nature walk?
You can feel free to stay on the beach if you like or participate in the walk which is less than a mile on flat maintained trail.
Will I see any wildlife or bears on this tour?
Bald eagles and their nests, herons, shorebirds and waterfowl are all common sights. Porpoises and even humpback whales occasionally surface for air, however this is not a designated wildlife tour and nothing can be guaranteed.
Can I bring a backpack?
Yes, small bags and backpacks are allowed.
Can I bring my own food or drink?
Food and drink are not allowed during this tour.
Are food and drink included?
Yes, a snack consisting water and smoked salmon, cheese, and crackers is provided.
Are there any physical requirements for this tour?
Guests need to be able climb a 10 step ladder to get in/out of the Seahawk vessel.
What type of clothing should I wear?
Light comfortable layers and a change of socks are recommended just in case yours get wet in the boots.
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Sep 2019 - Telester T.
I love hiking in the forest. The slugs are large and the trees are very beautiful. I wish there were more animals out there to see.
Aug 2019 - Winfried R.
Awesome day with nice people. Much to see and learn.
Jul 2019 - Jagjit B.
It was wonderful
Jul 2019 - Catherine V.
Learned about the ecology of the rain forest
Jun 2019 - Howard S.
Very nice experience. Even stopped on the way back to port when they saw a whale
Jun 2019 - Myrina Meleah A R.
Aug 2018 - Bruce K.
Very good introduction to Alaska. Captain and the naturalist Stephanie were excellent- informative and interesting. They shared information about vegetation of the island, as well as wildlife and history. The way the
Logging industry worked was extremely interesting. They also pointed out many interesting things about the tide and water wildlife. The snack around the campfire was a very nice touch!
Aug 2018 - Aleksey D.
The insider's knowledge of Daniella, our tour guide around the island, made for a wonderful and informative experience!
Jul 2018 - Jeannie B.
This was fun! We enjoyed the speedboat, and especially the nature hike through the rainforest. We even saw whales.
Jul 2018 - Colleen H.
Fantastic time! Boat Captain was very professional and very knowledgeable!
Jun 2018 - Kenneth P.
Had a wonderful time. All of the staff were helpful, pleasant, knowledgeable and entertaining. The landscape was amazing. It was great to learn more about the Rain forest. Our boat captain showed us some of the other points of interest along the way.
Sep 2017 - Lisa J.
We had a great time on this excursion. Our guides were very personable and knowledgeable. The boat ride was fun and it felt like a real adventure touring the island. I would definitely recommend this tour.
Sep 2017 - Vicki V.
Loved the raft trip and the guide/captain. Walk a bit strenous
Jul 2017 - Soe-Moe K.
Beautiful, breath taking view with Seahawk ride
Jun 2017 - Margaret M.
So very enjoyable and informative. Nice lunch too.
Jun 2016 - Jacqueline M.
This is a tour for someone who enjoys the trees and foliage. The "boardwalk" was pretty safe, but some areas were difficult for older travelers. There was very little wildlife, just a few birds and bugs.
Jun 2016 - Ken H.
Very informative. Easy walking trail.
May 2016 - Howard C.
Even though it was pouring rain we loved every minute. Our guide was amazing. It was awesome visiting a rainforest in Alaska.
May 2016 - Gerald C.
Great trip. Great guides. I posted a picture of our guides on your facebook page.