This classic trail can be easy or difficult, depending on how far you go. The easy section attracts many local families looking for a nice walk to the beach, wild strawberry picking, and outstanding views of glaciers. On this section, you’ll meander past giant Sitka Spruce trees, cross over bogs filled with skunk cabbage, and find yourself in sunny openings filled with thimbleberry bushes and birch trees. It’s about a mile to the first beach, Moose Meadows. From mid-June to mid-July, the meadow is filled with wildflowers—wild iris, chocolate lilies, red columbine, and beach pea. Past the meadow are shale-like uplifted rocks, a small pebble cove, and views of the Davidson Glacier at Glacier Points and the hanging Rainbow Glacier.
Trail runners or ambitious hikers can turn this moderate, rolling hike into an all-day event by continuing to Seduction Point, the end of the Haines Peninsula. This challenging hike involves scrambling along rocks and beach walking, but you’ll be rewarded with isolated coves, big views, and the potential to see humpback whales at the point.
Bears are known to travel this area, so keep a head’s up, make some noise, and consider carrying bear spray. You can also spot seals and river otters in the shore (there aren’t sea otters in the Upper Lynn Canal, so river otters occupy the intertidal zone).
If you want to hike more, follow the shore’s edge and then cut into the trees to head toward Twin Coves. It’s about 1.5 miles farther, with a bit of a climb on the return. Eventually, you’ll come out of the woods, through a salmonberry thicket with a huge cottonwood in it. Look for nesting eagles. When you burst out of the vegetation, you’ll find yourself on a black pebble beach! It’s a great place to swim on a warm day, and the views are outstanding. You can see down towards Juneau and the Chilkat Islands.
To continue, walk the shoreline to your left (looking at the water) around the cove and past the second cove, then look for a trail cutting into the woods. From here, you’ll be in and out of the woods and beaches until Seduction Point. Keep an eye out, for some of the trail turn offs are hard to spot. The point is still several hours away, so allow plenty of time if you want to go all the way. And bring lots of water.
Follow Mud Bay Road from town 6 miles, until you see the turnoff for Chilkat State Park. Turn right here onto a dirt road and continue another two miles, down a rutted, steep hill to the trailhead parking lot. It’s just after the turnoff to the boat launch and campgrounds, so stay left near the end.
Distance: 7 miles