My scout troop is headed to AK summer 06. We want to do a kayak trip somewhere in the area confined to south of Denali to Seward and ranging east to Valdez. We could have as long as 3 days for a trip or just make it a day trip. We have varying paddling levels within the troop. Cost could be a factor since we’d need to rent all equip. Any suggestions are welcome. Any places that would give discounts to scouts/groups would also be good.
Yikes - be careful
A scary responsibility. Please plan well and at the level of the weakest paddler.
AK padding trip …
I figured we’d need to see what everyones’ skill level is and then maybe plan some trips locally that will help build those skills. Most of us have paddled around in flat water or slow rivers. We will take that into account. Thanks.
The ocean can be so ferocious with sometimes such rocky cliffs that you cannot get to shore. Watch about the crab fisherman and would you kayak anywhere near the bering sea? Anyhow there are some neat lakes and when my wife and went there the highlight of our trip was chopper ride to mendenhal glacier. Lots of seattle style rain so wear wet suit in summer and dress to swim. A 16 ft mother ship power boat would be great on lakes. The ocean is for pros with bcu level 4 certification. Congratulations on being a scout leader.
There are outfitters in
Valdez, Seward, Juneau, and Haines that all do trips.
Since we were on our own and had our own kayaks I don’t know their names but they all looked like good size reputable outfitters.
I am sure if you do a search you could find their names.
The one in Valdez did a neat trip out to a glacier where you camped overnight and then returned.
If you want a bunch of good day trips as well as some overnighters, let me know and I will e-mail you our trip report. - We were there for four months a couple of years ago.
Yea, but it is even more
fun to kayak up to the face of it, and then surf out of the wave that the waterfall beside it made.
Two outfitters we used.
Kayak Adventures Worldwide
We did a camping/paddling trip of Northwestern Fjord. They are a first rate group and can easily handle your scouts.
Anydar Kayak Co. out of Valdez
We used them to tour Shoup Glacier on a day trip. Also a competent group with decent equipment.
How old is your scout troop?
There are two outfitters, locally, in Valdez:
Pangea Adventures http://www.alaskasummer.com and Anadyr Adventures
http://www.anadyradventures.com/index.html. Both take local high school kids out on trips. Both are very good, reputable companies and have really pro-active guides. They offer trips to Columbia Glacier, Shoup Glacier and various other places. Shoup Glacier would be a great trip for beginners and full of quite a bit of adventure.
It's at the end of Port Valdez and you can make it a day trip or a two day trip with camping
near the glacier. Shoup Glacier is -very- impressive. Calving and waterfall caverns are not uncommon. They'll get out and be able to explore as well.
If you want to kayak the western side of Prince William Sound, there are two companies,
locally, in Whittier, which is just 45 min south of Anchorage. Prince William Sound Kayak Center
http://www.pwskayakcenter.com/ and Alaska Sea Kayakers or ASK for short http://www.alaskaseakayakers.com
ASK has guided high school aged kids on day and multi-day trips as I have run into them quite often. What their current policy is and the details are I'm not sure of.
As far as my -personal- preference, ASK. Couldn't get a better group of folks! The company is locally run and owned and the guides are very experienced and have awesome people skills. The food they cook up is OUTSTANDING. I can't believe the stuff they come up with. One of the more popular trips is to Blackstone Bay. That's where I last ran into them, with a group of kids they were guiding. Blackstone Bay has awesome glaciers and huge waterfalls.
It's by far one of the best places I've ever paddled. Check out the above websites and if you have questions let 'em fly....
My Varsity scout troop has kids ages 14-18 in it. Currently there are 17 on the list to come on the trip, includes adult leaders. Have looked at some websites mentioned and will check the rest out soon as I can. I’ll be back with questions I’m sure!
Thanks for all the great info!
Some years back did some filming up there, as well as much of SE AK. You can rent in the Bay and perhaps even have a naturalist join your trip. The water is relatively protected, the scenery just amazing, and camping is also excellent. I think you’d find the Park people very helpful as well. Bang for buck, hard to beat. I’ve paddled so much in AK, and if I were in your shoes that’s where I’d go. You may have an issue with group size as I believe they limit that, but you could split up. Most other areas of SE AK have very limited camping. A bit out of your way, but perhaps worth a side trip. Also excellent paddling out of Homer that would meet your needs I think.
If your group has big bucks…
contact Alaska Discovery, and take their Whales and Ice trip.