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Overview

Quiet and old-fashioned, the Southeast Alaska town of Wrangell has a long history under the Tlingits, Russians, British, and Americans. It sits near the mouth of the Stikine River, one of North America's largest rivers. Jetboat tours up the Stikine are a featured attraction, providing the opportunity to explore this wild river, look for wildlife, and cruise up to icebergs calved from Chief Shakes Glacier. The modern local museum (housed within the multi-purpose Nolan Center) is one of the finest in Alaska. Wrangell's protected boat harbor has Chief Shakes Island in the center, and the little island contains a historic tribal house and ...

Quiet and old-fashioned, the Southeast Alaska town of Wrangell has a long history under the Tlingits, Russians, British, and Americans. It sits near the mouth of the Stikine River, one of North America's largest rivers. Jetboat tours up the Stikine are a featured attraction, providing the opportunity to explore this wild river, look for wildlife, and cruise up to icebergs calved from Chief Shakes Glacier. The modern local museum (housed within the multi-purpose Nolan Center) is one of the finest in Alaska. Wrangell's protected boat harbor has Chief Shakes Island in the center, and the little island contains a historic tribal house and colorful totem poles. Many petroglyphs (Native rock carvings) are visible on the shore a mile north of town. Thirty miles away is Anan Creek, a fine place to watch black and brown bears catching salmon. Local companies provide tours by boat or floatplane. An easy hike up little Mt. Dewey is right in town, or you can choose a longer day-hike south of town to Rainbow Falls and Shoemaker Overlook.

Don Pitcher
About the Expert

Don Pitcher has written or photographed 10 travel guidebooks to Alaska, Wyoming, Yellowstone-Grand Teton, and the San Juan Islands for Avalon Travel Publishing, Random House, and Sasquatch Books.

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Don Pitcher for Triporati

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Facts at a Glance

Climate

  • Best Time to Visit:

    Summer, but April brings 1,500 bald eagles to the Stikine River delta to catch spawning hooligan fish.