Experience an amazing natural adventure in bear viewing at the Anan Bear and Wildlife Observatory.
Upon disembarking the ship, a covered, heated boat stands ready to transport you the thirty-five miles to Anan, traveling via Eastern Passage, which offers a beautiful boat ride in protected waters between Wrangell Island and the Mainland.
Upon arrival at Anan, you will be greeted at the trailhead by U.S. Forest Service personnel, who will provide a brief orientation of what awaits you. Beginning in July, pink salmon arrive at Anan creek to spawn. At this time, Anan creek is teaming with salmon which naturally attracts brown and black bears, bald eagles and harbor seals. As you make your way along the trail, your guide will interpret the local flora and fauna and answer any questions you may have.
The walk in to the Observatory takes about 20-minutes and is close to 1/2 mile in length. Much of the groomed trail is boardwalk with several sets of narrow stairs and bridges over waterways. Reaching the Observatory, you will have approximately 90-minutes to watch the playful bears as they interact with one another and go about catching salmon in the creek. Please keep in mind that every day is different, and here in this natural setting, things happen in a natural way.
Following your time at the Observatory, you will return via the trail to where your boat awaits to transfer you back to the pier in Wrangell.
Please note: This tour includes considerable walking and over 200 stairs to climb. Portions of the trail are natural and can be slippery when wet. There is no dock at the trail head and guests will disembark on a rocky shoreline. As tide levels and conditions change, it can be slippery. The tour is not available to wheelchair guests or those with mobility concerns. Participants should be in good physical condition, have good vision and balance in order to safely navigate the trail. It is recommended to dress in layers and for the possibility of rain. Sturdy, water-resistant walking shoes are necessary. There are some outhouses along the trail and at the Observatory; however, there is no restroom on the boat. Food is strictly prohibited at the Observatory and along the trail. Minimum age to participate is 12 years old and children under 18 years old must be accompanied by an adult parent or guardian. Wildlife and bear sightings, while mostly likely to happen, are not guaranteed. Participants are well-advised that bear encounters are possible along the trail and must follow the direction of their guide at all times.