Summary : Frederick Sound and Stephen’s Passage are a distillation of all that Southeast Alaska has to offer. The itinerary leads you from the fishing village of Petersburg to Endicott Arm and back again through some of the most beautiful and dramatic cruising waters in the world. Along the way you will enter several mainland fiords, and visit a remote island archipelago where Stellar Sea Lions and Humpback Whales feed in the rich waters. All of the routes and anchorages are chosen to give you the best available opportunities to experience the rich and diverse environment of this temperate rain forest.
Activities : Birding, Hiking, Kayaking
$999,999,999 to $0
The vessel will be docked in Petersburg’s South Harbor. Guests come aboard at 12:30 p.m., stow gear and get familiar with the vessel. At 1:15 p.m., the journey will be underway, headed north through Wrangell Narrows and into Frederick Sound. Enjoy lunch as you head north toward the small islands that make up the Brother’s. Anchor in time for dinner, and have a quiet evening aboard.
Today is committed to exploring the unique environment of the Brother’s. A kayak paddle is along its rocky shoreline that provides a view of nesting Pigeon Guillemots, hunting Eagles and King Fishers. An afternoon walk into the dense, moss-floored forest of West Brother is a foray into an elfin wonderland.
This morning you will conclude your time in the islands and continue north, entering Stephen’s Passage. The glacial fiord of Endicott Arm provides multiple opportunities for exploration and adventure. Enter the ice flows, flowing from Dawes Glacier, and watch as ice calves from its 250’ high face and falls into the sea. Anchor in Ford’s Terror, another glacial fiord opening on Endicott’s north shore. Here you will kayak through the narrow entrance and walk the uplands forest, literally following in the footprints of John Muir.
Today you leave the majesty of Ford’s Terror and move west down Endicott. You may pause to explore a beautiful estuary system that is home to salmon, Brown Bears, wolves, eagles and numerous shore and diving birds. All of Endicott is an amazingly complex ecosystem and is a great example of the forces that shape and populate Southeast Alaska. Crossing the shallow terminal moraine that forms the entrance to Endicott, you keep watch for transient Orcas, as well as Humpback Whales as you re-enter Stephen’s Passage and turn south. Spend the night in either a quiet cove on Admiralty Island, or in an inlet on the mainland shoreline. In either case, you are in bear country here, and you will take time to learn the key elements of a prime bear habitat. Explore by foot and by kayak.
Today, explore at sea where the weather, animals and interests may direct. You may stay an extra day exploring the ice-carved depths of Endicott, among the birds, tide pools and forest of the Brother's, or by spending more time in Stephen's Passage watching and listening to whales feeding. Or, you may use the day to explore a new anchorage not on the list.
Getting under way after another wonderful breakfast, you will head toward Thomas Bay. Here you will anchor in Scenery Cove and take a skiff ride up the outflow stream of retreating Baird Glacier. If conditions allow, go ashore, cross the cobbled outwash plain passing through a new forest emerging from the recently revealed gravels. A miles walk will lead you up onto the leading edge of this unique glacial environment. Share memories of the week back onboard, and celebrate your time together.
Depart your anchorage in Scenery Cove and return to Petersburg. You will arrive there in time to catch the morning flight out of Petersburg.
While this is a planned itinerary, each trip differs slightly depending upon the time of the tidal currents, the weather conditions, wildlife viewing opportunities, and the wishes of the passengers.
Accommodations aboard the Catalyst; all meals onboard ship; wine and beer; excursions; entrance fees; leadership of crew and local guides; boots; kayaking equipment; and permits, unless otherwise indicated in the itinerary.
The cost of air flights, unless otherwise indicated in the itinerary; airport taxes; passports; visas; immunizations; insurance of any kind; laundry; excess baggage; items of a personal nature; discretionary gratuities; medical costs; costs of hospitalization; additional expenses arising from the delay or extension of a trip due to weather, political disputes, illness, failure of transportation, or other causes beyond control.