Misty Fjords Kayak Camping Expeditions

6 Days/5 Nights

Prices from $1749 per person

Kayaking towards Eddystone rock on a misty day with beautiful reflections.

Our 6 Day kayak/camping trip explores one of Alaska’s best kept secrets: the Misty Fjords National Monument. Remote and wild, Misty Fjords has 2.3 million acres of designated wilderness area and is accessible only by float-plane or boat. The Fjords' steep granite cliff walls provide a spectacular, sheltered home for wildlife as well as protected waters which make the Misty Fjords one of the best places in Alaska to kayak and camp. Our small group guided expeditions are all inclusive: guests need only to bring clothing and a sleeping bag. We take care of the transport to and from Misty Fjords, packing, cooking and bear safety so all you have to do is enjoy the wilderness.

Highlights of the expedition include sea kayaking in Walker Cove and Rudyerd Bay; hiking to Punchbowl Lake; campfires on the beach and paddling in the Behm Canal. Not to mention the rare opportunity to spend 6 days immersed in the wilderness with no phones, televisions or other digital distractions.

Is this trip for me? 

The 6 Day itinerary allows anyone with good physical fitness and a spirit of adventure to explore the most spectacular parts of Misty Fjords. Participants do not have to be expert sea kayakers, but should have spent enough time in kayaks to know that they will be comfortable for paddling for several hours at a time and up to 6 hours in a day with rest breaks. Families are welcome. We recommend this trip for children aged 12 and over. For groups of 4 or more we can create custom itineraries with more challenging paddling or additional hiking, just let us know what you want to do.

Why Book a Trip with Us?

Southeast Sea Kayaks has been guiding kayak trips in Misty Fjords and Southeast Alaska for over 15 years. We are the local experts on sea kayaking and camping in Misty Fjords and we love to share the area with our guests. Our expeditions have been recommended by Outdoor Magazine, Conde Naste Traveller and featured on Motion TV. Our Misty Fjords trips are unique and personal: we are happy to confirm and run trips with just 2 participants.  Small groups, highly qualified guides, delicious camp cooking with local ingredients and top quality equipment set our guided expeditions apart. Our trip fill very quickly and we have limited space each summer so please book early to avoid disappointment.

Small Groups, Safety and Camp Cuisine

Click here to see the Motion TV episode made on one of our Misty Fjords expeditions.

Click here to see the Motion TV episode made on one of our Misty Fjords expeditions.

Each Misty Fjords expedition is unique and memorable, lifelong friends are often made on our trips and we keep in touch with many guests for years to come. We think that small groups are the best way to enjoy the serenity of the wilderness and will have better chances of seeing wildlife. Unless you have a private group, our maximum group size is 6, but most trips are 4 - 5 people.  All guides are qualified in wilderness first aid but, most importantly, they excel at leading fun wilderness expeditions. Our guides are knowledgeable naturalists;  know how to camp in the rainforest and take great pride in their camp cooking. We use local ingredients and tailor our menu to each group's preferences. Our guests consistently rave about the food. We take back-country safety very seriously. Guides instruct guests in defensive camping techniques used for bear safety and we carry bear spray when hiking or exploring the shoreline. We also carry VHF Marine radios and a satellite phone for emergency communications.  

Great Guides

Expedition leader Nathaniel “Natcho” Stephens has been leading kayak expeditions and teaching sea kayaking throughout the world for many years. He is especially passionate about the fjords of Southeast Alaska and has an infectious enthusiasm for everything about the place—from the ocean to the forest to the alpine lakes. Nathaniel is the perfect guide to lead this trip, having worked for several years as a USFS wilderness sea kayak ranger in Misty Fjords National Monument. In this capacity he spent many months paddling, hiking, and camping throughout the region and developed a deep understanding of this wild and unique place. Nathaniel holds paddling and teaching certifications from the ACA and BCU, and is an Alaskan Wilderness EMT. He is a passionate naturalist and backcountry chef, and loves to share photos, video, and writings from his journeys.

Misty Fjords Scenery

The mists moving across the 3000 foot granite cliffs and the reflections in the glassy water inside the Fjords are what make Misty Fjords so unique and spectacular. The old growth temperate rainforest is lush and green and home to a huge variety of species of plants, moss, lichen and fungi. The hiking trails in Misty Fjords were built by the Civilian Conservation Corps: they are rugged and wild and reward intrepid hikers with amazing views of waterfalls and alpine lakes.  Many guests say the hike to Punchbowl Lake is one of the highlights of their trip. We may also have the option to explore the Checat Lake, Nooya or Winstanley Lake Trails when time and weather allow. Our guides will plan the best possible itinerary for each trip based on weather, guest preferences and ability. Check out Motion TV's episode on Misty Fjords  to see the amazing scenery and the impact that the Fjords had on the show's guests and host.

Kayakers heading into Rudyerd Bay in Misty Fjords.

Wildlife in the Misty Fjords

The Misty Fjords are home to an amazing array of wildlife. Black bears, brown bears, wolves and deer inhabit the forest; mountain goats dwell on the high alpine areas and seals, sea lions, river otters and mink are found on the rocky shores and in the calm waters. In May and June we see a great variety of migratory birds in the Fjords.  In July and August salmon return to their streams, attracting bears and birds to the spawning grounds. On the boat journey to and from the Fjords and when paddling in the Behm Canal we often see humpback whales, Dall’s porpoises and orcas. While we never know what we will see on any particular trip: all the photos here were taken by our guides or guests on trips and they give a good idea of the variety of wildlife we may see.

Trip Details

The trip combines sea kayaking, hiking and camping and is designed so that proficient paddlers can spend longer days on the water while less experienced groups can spend more time exploring ashore. We camp in tents and carry all of our gear in our kayaks on the day we move camp. Guides do the packing, planning, cooking and the dishes. Guests help with setting up camp as well as with moving and packing the kayaks. We try to meet the afternoon before our trip departs so that our guides can answer questions and we can outfit for boots and rain gear as needed.

Frequently Asked Questions PDF

Gear List PDF

Trip Dates & Prices

For 2014 we have Misty Fjords Expeditions scheduled for the following dates:

  • August 4th - 9th - (Full)
  • August 11th - 16th - 6 spaces available
  • Other dates may be available for groups of 4 or more, please inquire

Pricing for Misty Fjords Expeditions is on a sliding scale based on the number of participants per trip. For the trip dates above the prices are as follows. 

  • 2 person trip $3249 per person
  • 3 person trip $2419 per person
  • 4 person trip $1999 per person
  • 5 person trip $1749 per person
  • 6 person trip $1729 per person

To reserve a place on a Misty Fjords Expedition we take a $100 per person deposit at the time of booking. Our sliding scale is listed above. We are happy to run the trip for only 2 people but we do understand that the cost of the trip for only 2 people can be prohibitive so we do our best to get together groups of at least 4 people for each trip date. You can sign up for a trip without being committed to paying the 2 person rate if no one else signs up for that date. If you are traveling solo we are happy to sign you up for a trip date that is already running. Please call or email us for details. The deposit is fully refundable 60 days prior to the trip if we do not have the minimum number of people required to run the expedition at an affordable rate for everyone. You can make a deposit for a trip date online.

Sounds complicated? Please don't hesitate to call or email us at paddle@kayakketchikan.com with questions.


Day One: Meet your guides and Captain at 8:30am and depart for your Misty Fjords sea kayaking adventure! The journey to Misty Fjords by boat is about two and a half hours. Along the way we learn about the area and watch for marine mammals. Once we arrive at Hut Point we set up camp amongst the old growth trees.  After lunch we will take a short orientation paddle in the Behm Canal or into Walker Cove. We return to camp with time to relax or explore the tidal zone while your guide prepares a delicious meal.

Guides cook delicious meals using local ingredients.

Guides cook delicious meals using local ingredients.

Day Two: After a hot breakfast we set off into Walker Cove in our sea kayaks. Walker Cove is very little visited and we are frequently followed by curious seals. The highlight of Walker Cove is a salmon stream that was once home to a Tlingit village and is also a great place to watch for bears. We aim to get to the salmon stream for lunch, spend some time exploring then head back to camp.

Day Three: After breakfast we pack our kayaks and head to Rudyerd Bay. Paddling in the Behm canal we pass magnificent waterfalls cascading down the cliffs and have the chance to encounter marine mammals. As kayakers round Point Eva, the views of Rudyerd Bay are stunning. The 3000 foot "Wall" at Punchbowl Cove is one of the most amazing features of the Fjords, and we camp right beside it at the head of the Cove.

Day Four: Today we head up the trail to spectacular Punchbowl Lake. The hike through the rainforest leads us amongst towering old growth trees and alongside dramatic waterfalls. The hike is challenging but the views of waterfalls and Punchbowl Lake make it more than worth the effort. When the forest service boat or canoe are available we explore the lake and eat lunch on the shore. After descending from the lake there will be time to relax and for an evening paddle.

Day Five:  Paddle to Checats Cove or Winstanley Island if conditions allow. We may paddle to New Eddystone rock on the way, take a short hike in Checats Cove or plan an evening paddle in Shoalwater pass to look for bears.

Day Six: Sleep in and enjoy brunch before packing up camp. There is the chance for one last paddle or hike or to just relax on the beach before a float-plane lands to pick us up. The flight back to Ketchikan is a spectacular way to end our time in the Misty Fjords.  We aim to return to Ketchikan by 5pm but may be delayed by weather conditions.  

What is Included and What to Bring

 Included in the trip price:

  • Boat Transportation to & float-plane transport from Misty Fjords
  • Double fiberglass sea kayaks (singles on request), paddles, PFDs
  • Experienced guide
  • Delicious camp cuisine
  • Dry bags for your gear & Alaskan Xtra Tuff rubber boots
  • Camping equipment including tents and thermarests

We ask our guests to bring:

  • Sleeping bags*
  • Appropriate Clothing and footwear. See Gear List.
  • Cameras
  • Headlamp
  • A book to read
  • Toiletries and personal items
  • Alcoholic beverages if desired (space is limited)

    Sleeping bags are available for rent. See our FAQ and recommended gear list in PDF format.  

View of Rudyerd Bay from Point Louise

View of Rudyerd Bay from Point Louise

Looking for More Information?

Learn more About Us and check out our Top Five Reasons to Take a Tour with Southeast Sea Kayaks. Got a question? Call us on 1-800-287-1607 or email us anytime, or checkout our FAQ page.