Juneau paddlers opinions sought

I’ve got a good friend moving to Juneau later this year. We’re trying to figure out what boats are most useful in that region.

Would a plastic 15’ Wilderness Systems Cape Horn kayak be up to the challenges of that area?

How much use would a composite tandem canoe get?

Any CLII-III whitewater in the area that would make a whitewater boat worth hauling?

Any thoughts, wisdom, or cries of derision you’d like to share would be very appreciated.

Thanks much!

It rains alot. Sea Kayak is idea., not much for WW that I know of. Depending on your goal, a 16-18’ kayak that will hold a fair amount of gear will work nicely. Because of the shore is so abrasive (acorn barnacles) plastic can be nice, but glass works. The width will depend on your intent, skinny (20-22") = open ocean high skills level, wider = stable, protected waters, can be better for camping as you pull yet another set of fleece out (because all the rest is wet).

Watch out for afternoon winds, they can whip up in a hurry. Be sure to visit Tracy, Endicott, Fords.

I lived in Juneau
A drysuit is a must. Even in the warmer months, that water is coooooold. I never saw many canoes there, but I don’t remember the water being flat enough, often enough. I agree: a kayak is much better, and if you want to paddle anywhere other than downtown, Auke Bay, or any of the other “close-in” places near shore - like over to Admiralty Island or some of the small islands - you really need one that can haul some gear. Even for a day paddle, I took a change of clothes (including footwear), VHF radio, EPIRB, GPS, camera, a survival kit, extra water and food, etc. SE Alaska can be a harsh place, even if it is more populated than some similar parts of AK.

Of course, you CAN’T paddle anywhere without fishing gear, either :). No one can pass up 2 halibut a day, and 2 Kings in the summer for residents: try Fish Creek on Douglas Island and the corner of Douglas/inside Gastineau Channel for the Kings.

…for the info. Wet - yes I am aware…

I figured most of the paddling up there would be touring/sea kayak. I just keep seeing bits and pieces on the web mentioning canoeing in the area.

Thanks for the fishing beta!