“We had a fantastic trip up the river to see the Bears! The guides were so personable and knowledgable about the fishing, bears, and wildlife in the area. We saw a grizzly with her 4 Cubs and a lot of black bears fishing doe salmon. Expensive, but well worth it!”
Alaska Waters is an Alaska Native Business located in the City of Wrangell in Southeast Alaska. Alaska Waters primarily operates the Marine Vessel Chutine Warrior, the only jet boat in Wrangell that has a marine head (restroom). Note that we have other boats in our fleet that do not have marine heads. Alaskan locals guide all of our tours, thus they have extensive knowledge of the area and history. All captains have First Aid Training; some have Emergency Trauma Technician (or higher) medical certification. All boat operators are licensed, certified by the US Coast Guard and all of our tours are fully insured. Safety is our highest priority in all activities.
AnAn Bear & Wildlife Observatory is managed by the United States Forest Service (USFS) and is regulated on a permit basis. AnAn Observatory is limited to 60 visitors per day July 5 – August 25. Availability for AnAn Observatory is extremely limited after March 1st.
When you book an AnAn Bear & Wildlife Observatory Tour with Alaska Waters, we acquire USFS AnAn Permits for your party.
Alaska Waters has limited AnAn Bear & Wildlife Observatory Tour space available and we highly recommend booking your spot today.
For more information or to submit concerns consult the USFS website.
AnAn Bear and Wildlife Observatory offers an excellent, once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to view and photograph Alaskan wildlife in their natural habitat. While at the observatory, you’ll have the opportunity to watch Black & Brown Bears, Bald Eagles and Harbor Seals feast on the Pacific Pink Salmon. Your tour will depart via covered and heated jet boat from City Dock in Wrangell, Alaska and travel 35 miles via the Eastern Passage to the AnAn trailhead. Approximately a 1 hour boat ride, this is a scenic journey in the protected waters between Wrangell Island and the Mainland. Upon arrival, there is a ½ mile (20 minute) walk on a US Forest Service regulated trail rated “moderately difficult” to the observatory, where guests will stay for 3 hours. We suggest guests bring a snack or meal for the boat ride. Food is not allowed on shore.
Guests and Guides will off-load in a tidal area. At the trailhead, US Forest Service personnel will meet guests and provide a brief orientation. If asked, guests will need to present identification (photo ID, drivers license, passport, etc.). Accompanied by Alaska Waters Guides, a maximum of 10 guests at a time will then traverse the ½ mile trail. The trail consists of a narrow boardwalk without handrails, including 307 steps, and covers the diverse landscape. Those with fear of heights or balance issues may be concerned with the steep hills that occasionally appear on the side of the boardwalk. Walking sticks are available upon request, but guests must be able to walk well. Guides will not be able to assist with walking, as their concern and responsibility is safety around the bears. The bears enjoy utilizing the trail as much as we do, thus guides will manage the guests to allow a bear to pass by. The bears have their own personalities, some are tolerant of people, where others are not. Our guides are trained to identify the different bears, anticipate their actions, and manage encounters.
Both Black & Brown Bears, Bald Eagles and Harbor Seals intermingle at AnAn Creek a mere 10 meters distance from the observatory deck. AnAn Creek has the earliest Pink Salmon run of the season, drawing Alaska’s predators to fish within close parameters of each other, a rare occurrence in the wild. These conditions make for an amazing experience. The various wildlife have little regard for the people watching them, and most fish within a few feet of the observation deck, allowing priceless picture opportunities. A photo blind is located directly on AnAn Creek below the observation deck where guests can take up-close photos of the bears and eagles catching fish.