From Cache

Skagway Chilkoot Lake Wildlife Kayak Tour to Haines

From Skagway, the trip begins with a 45-minute ferry ride along the steep-walled fjords connecting Skagway to Haines. Over a dozen unnamed waterfalls drop hundreds of feet from the cliff sides on both sides of the boat. Marvel at the scenery and look for humpback whales, harbor seals, and bald eagles.

Arrive in Haines where you will meet your wilderness guide and set out on a seaside drive to Chilkoot Lake State Park. This park has many highlights including Tlingit Indian cultural sites, a salmon-filled river flowing into the sea, and a turquoise lake surrounded by snow-capped mountains.

Once you arrive at Chilkoot Lake State Park, take in the scenery as you board your two-person sea kayaks. Your expert guide will show you the basics of paddling. Outfitted with the proper gear, you will soon be gliding silently along the shores of the lake. This pristine lake is uncrowded, and the scenery is spectacular. Huge waterfalls spill off of the cliffs surrounding the lake, lush green forests crowd the shoreline, and wildlife abounds. Pause at the base of one of these waterfalls, where your guide will reveal the secret workings of the rainforest.

Beginning in July, sockeye salmon spawn in one of the clear streams that feed into the lake. Eagles and bears are often attracted to this spot, and you will be able to view all the activity from your kayak. The total time on the lake is approximately 1 hour 30 minutes.

Paddle back to shore and enjoy some snacks before driving back to Haines. Once back in Haines, board the high-speed catamaran for your journey back to Skagway. Return to your ship filled with memories and photographs from an unforgettable adventure.

Custom departure times may be available upon request. If you don't see a time that works for you, please reach out to us!

Duration: 6.5 hours (Roundtrip from cruise ship terminal. Ferry to Haines: 45 minutes. Kayak Time: 1.5 hours.)


  • Fast Ferry fare to and from Haines on public service Catamaran Ferry.
  • Snacks (including gluten-free and vegan/vegetarian options), bottled water (including sparkling)
  • Gear includes: Personal Floatation Device, Paddle, 2-person Easy Rider kayak.


  • Minimum of 2 passengers is required to book
  • Minimum age of 7 years old
  • Maximum weight of 250 lbs

Duration: 6.5 hours. Tour times below are approximate:

  • 45 minutes - fast ferry to Haines 
  • 45 minutes - nature tour to Chilkoot State Park
  • 15 minutes - safety talk and equipment distribution
  • 90 minutes - kayaking on Chilkoot Lake
  • 30 minutes - snack time at the picnic location
  • 60 minutes - scenic tour and transfer to fast ferry
  • 45 minutes - fast ferry to Skagway

Meeting Instructions:

  • This tour meets on the cruise ship dock. Fully detailed instructions are included on your finalized ticket vouchers.

ADA Accessibility of Tour:

  • This tour is limited mobility accessible. Guests must be able to climb 4 steps into and out of the bus and they need to be able to walk up and down gangways that vary depending on the tide. Additionally, guests need to be able to get in and out of double kayak cockpits independently from a dock (good balance required) and paddle for approximately 90 minutes on the lake. There is limited space for collapsible wheelchairs and walkers. The ferry to and from Haines is NOT wheelchair accessible. There is no storage available for motorized scooters. Please leave a comment during checkout if accommodations for collapsible equipment will be required on tour.

Is there a minimum number of guests?

Yes. There is a minimum of 2 guests and a maximum of 14 guests per departure.

Is there a minimum age requirement?

The kayaking and rafting tours have a minimum age of 7.  If a child requires a car seat, please provide advance notice.

Is there a maximum weight limit or restrictions for rafting and kayaking?

Yes. The weight limit for the rafting and kayak trip is 250 lbs. The kayaking tour requires that guests can paddle for 1.5 hours and get themselves comfortably in and out of a kayak. 

What kind of kayaks do you use?

We use 2-person Easy Rider fiberglass kayaks. They are very stable and perfect for kayaking on Chilkoot Lake. 

Do you meet us at our ship?

Yes, a representative will meet the guests just past security.

Is this tour wheelchair accessible?

No. We do not have a wheelchair lift in any of our vehicles.

What should I wear while on tour?

We recommend that you dress in layers. It can be cold enough that you want a wool cap, gloves, and a jacket, or it could be so warm you will be in a T-shirt with sunscreen and sunglasses. The weather can change quickly.

What size groups are on your tours?

Our maximum group size is 14. Our typical tour has around 6-8 guests at one time. We can charter large buses for large groups with advance notice.

What kinds of vehicles do you use?

Depending on the size of the group and the tour, we utilize everything from an SUV like the Toyota Sequoia or Sienna to the 14-passenger Ford Econoline Van to the 14- passenger Airporter-style bus.

What if I have a special diet?

The provided snacks include gluten-free, vegetarian, and vegan options. 

Not seeing answers to your questions?

Check out other frequently asked questions here!

Customer Reviews
Sep 2023 - Sydney C.

A fun small group kayak trip! We were the only only ones the lake. Beautiful scenery. Excellent guide. Couldn't have asked for a better trip.

Aug 2023 - Sean N.

Our kayak tour was fantastic! We had a small group and Joe, our guide made the journey a joy. I saw plenty of wildlife up to this point but my goal on the kayak tour was to spot a bald eagle. GOAL MET!! A real beauty was directly above us on a branch as we paused the kayaks under a tree. As a bonus, we saw a mama bear and two cubs fishing for salmon.

Aug 2023 - Mcaylie L.

We had a great time kayaking on Chilkoot Lake! Our guide Joe was very knowledgeable and friendly. The tour group sizes are on the smaller size, which was very nice. We saw a lot of salmon and were told it is not uncommon to see bears on the shore, but we did not see any that day. The lake itself was gorgeous and we are so glad we were able to go on this tour!

Aug 2023 - Karen C.

I chose this excursion, since my grandson & I are traveling together. We had a wonderful experience. We saw salmon, jumping in the lake! We saw at least 2 eagles, and best of all we had FUN! Our guide was informative, nice, and casual. I loved every minute of this kayak trip! We got some wonderful pics, too!

Jul 2023 - Stephen A.

Overall this was a pleasant trip. The kayaking was relatively easy and the scenery was beautiful. I was just disappointed that we did not see any more wildlife as we only saw one Bald Eagle on the entire excursion.

Jul 2023 - Donald D.

It was a real pleasure and was treated very well by both Joe and Liz, who are very experienced kayak people. And the equipment and the area that they took us to kayak were top-notch. I would recommend this kayak excursion to anyone thank you!

Jun 2023 - Ross C.

Great experience on the most incredible lake I have ever seen!

Jun 2023 - Kristi B.

This was my favorite excursion in Alaska, partially because the weather gods were on our side. The transport to Haines was on time and nice scenery on the way. The lake was gorgeous. We were the only ones on the lake that I could see and it was pure glass. The instructor was helpful, knowledgeable, and friendly.

May 2023 - Daniel M.

It was a great experience! The lake was beautiful! Our guide was very knowledgeable about he area. We appreciated the smaller group sizes. In fact it ended up just being our family of 5. We had most the lake to ourselves.

Jul 2022 - William R.

This was the highlight of a 15-day trip to Alaska. Chilkoot Lake was absolutely stunning. Joe was a fabulous guide - he provided great information but also gave us alone time. He was also quickly responsive to a few last minute questions we had. Equipment was top notch. I highly recommend this trip.

Jun 2018 - Sangmi K.

Breathtaking views...our guides Patrick and Ivy were patient and informative. It was an adventure that our family will never forget.

Jun 2017 - Lorna K.

We had a wonderful time on this kayaking excursion. Zephyr was helpful and knowledgeable and lots of fun. While it rained which made things a bit wet, we had a great time and would easily do this again. We went with friends of ours and they had a great time also. Ask about the book that the owner of this company wrote - it is wonderful! Doug and Lorna Koci

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Duration: 6.5 hours

Number of Passengers *

Adult: $221.25

Child (7-12): $190.00

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  • 212 Admiral Way Ste. 5 Juneau, Alaska 99801
  • 1-888-586-8489