Take a Hike!

One of the outstanding advantages of an Alaskan Dream Cruise is that our guests experience the Inside Passage through a local lens. It’s Alaskans giving you up-close and personal tours of the places they know best, including remote spots that are among the region’s best kept secrets – locales that provide us with unique access and an insider’s view of secluded waterfalls, Native culture, and panoramic landscapes.

“Most of the guests participate in hikes,” says Allison Dohman, our Onboard & Land Excursion Coordinator.

Opportunities to trek in the Alaska wilderness are available on all our itineraries. In fact, hiking is one of the most popular activities among our guests, because it immerses them even more deeply in what makes Alaska so spectacular.

Hiking in the Tongass National ForestImagine the thrill of sighting a bald eagle soaring past a glacier, a glimpse of a bear foraging in the woods, or the sensation of a waterfall’s spray upon your skin.

We’ve identified about a dozen trails rated easy, moderate, and difficult that are appropriate for all fitness levels. In addition, guides divide our hikers into three groups: leisurely, intermediate, and active. So, whether you prefer to amble along the path and stop frequently to snap photos for your Instagram… or you’d rather charge like an Olympian to the top of the trail… or you find yourself somewhere in between, hiking excursions are sure to be a memorable part of your cruise.

Guests can also trek on their own if they have free time, and Allison especially recommends Mt. Dewey trail in Wrangell, which has sweeping views. Other favorites include the Nugget Falls Trail at the Mendenhall Glacier, near Juneau, a stunning and easy hike that USA Today says is THE place for “up-close ice-gazing” in Southeast Alaska.

Although the deep, opaque water prevents you from climbing directly onto the mass, if you take the popular Nugget Falls trail, you’ll end up a few hundred yards from the glacier’s face. Also revealing itself when you arrive is the path’s namesake – a 60-foot cascade abutting a granite cliff.USA Today

One of our most unique opportunities for hiking is in Kasaan on Prince of Wales Island. Allison notes that over the years, Alaskan Dream Cruises has forged relationships with this beautiful Native community, which is one of only two Haida villages in the entire state.

Other popular hikes include the Bartlett Cove Forest Loop in Glacier Bay National Park, Rainbow Falls in Wrangell, Trail of Time at the Mendenhall Glacier, and the Baranof Warm Springs Trail.

Allison also reminds guests that Sitka has some fantastic trails that can be accessed either before or after a cruise. They include the scenic Mosquito Cove Trail and Herring Cove Trail which winds through old growth forest to Beaver Lake.

“If it’s a nice, clear night and you have a vehicle, go to Harbor Mountain, where you can see all of Sitka,” Allison suggests. She says avid trekkers can hike from bottom to top, while others can drive part way up, then take a steep, 15 or 20-minute hike to the summit.

As for gear, Allison urges people to bring their own trekking poles and appropriate footwear – regular tennis shoes are fine on many of the trails, although hikers are your best bet – and be sure to take along rain gear and water bottles.  

Hiking is just one of many adventures we’ve got planned for you on your Alaskan Dream Cruise. Putting your feet on the ground is a wonderful way to commune with nature and soak in the beauty and culture of the Inside Passage. Not booked yet? Contact our reservations specialists today at 1-855-747-8100. Get ready to lace ‘em up and hit the trail! 

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