The Best Wildlife Viewing Spots on the Kenai Peninsula

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Best Wildlife Viewing Spots on the Kenai Peninsula

Kenai Peninsula Day Cruises

Day cruises from Seward and Homer are great ways to see whales, sea otters, and sea lions. You can also sometimes see shore animals like mountain goats and bears.
4 to 8.5 hrs

This vet­er­an tour oper­a­tor runs a a fleet of fast, mod­ern boats in Res­ur­rec­tion Bay and Kenai Fjords Nation­al Park. You’ll vis­it tide­wa­ter glac­i­ers as you watch for puffins, sea otters, Dall’s por­pois­es, sea lions, and more. Some tours are designed to please bird­ers or shut­ter­bugs, while oth­ers are per­fect for families. 

Season: March 8 - Oct 13 $109+ 3.5 hrs - Full Day

Res­ur­rec­tion Bay and Kenai Fjords are great places to see wildlife and glac­i­ers. And Major Marine’s ves­sels, which have cozy heat­ed cab­ins and an out­door view­ing area, can take you out to see both. This fam­i­ly-owned tour oper­a­tor has gone above and beyond to give guests an amaz­ing day on the water since 1990

Season: May 4 - September 30 $173.95+ 3.75 - 5.75 hrs

Phillips 26 Glac­i­er Cruise, out of Whit­ti­er, will take you to 26 dif­fer­ent glac­i­ers in just 5.5 hours. Enjoy cozy com­forts on the high-speed cata­ma­ran and wan­der its out­door decks as you come with­in 300 feet of mas­sive tide­wa­ter glac­i­ers. In addi­tion to glac­i­ers, the cap­tain will be on the look­out for wildlife like otters, whales, har­bor seals, and marine birds. The trip takes place in the after­noon, and a hot lunch is includ­ed in your tour.   ...more

Season: Mid April to September $265+ 3/4 to Full Day Excursions

Homer is the hal­ibut cap­i­tal of Alas­ka, and this long­time char­ter com­pa­ny offers a blue-chip way to get to the fish. They have high-qual­i­ty boats, expe­ri­enced cap­tains, and enthu­si­as­tic crews — as well as an inside line on find­ing hal­ibut, rock fish and sil­ver salmon. But they also offer a vari­ety of oth­er ways to enjoy the waters off Kachemak Bay, from wildlife cruis­ing to pad­dling a kayak or hik­ing in Kachemak Bay State Park. 

Season: May - September $100+ 2 hrs - Full Day

Whether you’d like to go on a per­son­al­ized boat tour of the Homer area or take a water taxi to the Alaskan back­coun­try, Homer is an ide­al place to launch from, and Cold­wa­ter has the boats and exper­tise to get you there. Explore places like Kachemak Bay State Park, the small town of Sel­dovia, and pic­turesque Hal­ibut Cove.

Season: May 1 - 3rd week of September $449+ 8-10 hrs

Get up close to the Alaskan glac­i­ers and wildlife you came to expe­ri­ence by tak­ing a cruise into Kenai Fjords Nation­al Park on a cus­tom-built cata­ma­ran out of Seward. The dif­fer­ence from oth­er cruis­es, is that you’ll then get off the boat and into a kayak, pad­dle around ice­bergs, and watch for wildlife from your own vessel.

Season: April - Sept
$4,000 Day Cruise, 8 Hrs Up To 6 Guests | $8,000+ Multi-Day, Up To 6 Guests
Cruise Ship Type: Small Ship Cruises
Ship Name: M/V Caroline

Spend the after­noon, or a few days explor­ing the waters of Res­ur­rec­tion Bay and Prince William Sound aboard the M/V Car­o­line, a beau­ti­ful cus­tom-built yacht set for adven­ture! It’s the per­fect set­ting for a fam­i­ly or small group vaca­tion. Fill your days loung­ing on the fly­bridge, fish­ing, kayak­ing, strolling beach­es and cruis­ing to your next fan­tas­tic destination.

Season: Year Round $200+ 3.5 to 8 hrs

Lazy Otter offers clas­sic tours, but this is a water taxi, so they’ll also take you any­where you want to go with­in Price William Sound — or just cus­tomize a tour to what­ev­er you want to see. Maybe that’s glac­i­ers, or whales, — or maybe it’s qui­et time on a seclud­ed beach. Lazy Otter can also help facil­i­tate tak­ing you and your fam­i­ly on a camp­ing trip. You’re not held to any strict sched­ule, either: if, on a day tour, you can spend more time in one  ...more

Bear Viewing Tours

Take a fly-in bear viewing tour from Kenai / Soldotna or Homer to see bears in the wild. Most tours take place in Lake Clark or Katmai National Park.
Season: Year Round $895 Bear Viewing, $585+ Flightseeing 45 min - 5 hrs

Watch bears dig­ging for clams, wan­der­ing the sedge grass, or nurs­ing their young – all in a short flight from Homer to Kat­mai or Lake Clark Nation­al Park. Smokey Bay’s bear tours last about five hours total — includ­ing flights and about three hours on the ground. On any giv­en day there will always be a morn­ing out­ing (leav­ing at 8 a.m. at the lat­est) and pos­si­bly one that leaves around 2 p.m.

Season: June 1 - Sept 15 $1699 per person 4 - 8 hrs

For many Alaskan trav­el­ers, bears are the ulti­mate high­light. Pair a mag­nif­i­cent sight­ing with a gor­geous heli­copter flight­see­ing ride and you’ll have an unfor­get­table expe­ri­ence. On this unique tour from Homer, you’ll take a heli­copter ride out into one of Alaska’s gor­geous nation­al parks to wit­ness these spec­tac­u­lar crea­tures in the wild.

Season: May 15 - Sept 15 $685+ 3 hrs -11 hrs

Spend sev­er­al hours or a full day watch­ing bears in the wild on a quin­tes­sen­tial Alaskan adven­ture with a fam­i­ly-run com­pa­ny. Start with a scenic flight out of Homer over Kachemak Bay and into Kat­mai or Lake Clark Nation­al Park. Once you land, your pilot/​guide will take you to an opti­mal spot to watch and pho­to­graph these mag­nif­i­cent crea­tures in their nat­ur­al envi­ron­ment, hunt­ing, play­ing, and relax­ing. Spend any­where from 1.5 to 9 hours on the  ...more

$6595 to $6795 (+ internal air) 6 Days / 5 Nights

In the best way pos­si­ble. you’re out­num­bered by bears dur­ing your stay at this pri­vate fly-in wilder­ness camp. Fly by char­tered plane from Homer to Alas­ka Bear Camp on a 5‑night, 6‑day all-inclu­sive pack­age. This deluxe back­coun­try camp accom­mo­dates just 14 guests in some of the best bear habi­tat in the world. In con­trast to day trips cater­ing to dozens of vis­i­tors at a time, Bear Camp offers a rare and exclu­sive wilder­ness immersion.

Season: May 25 - Sept 15 $575+ 2 to 3 hrs

Fly out of Sol­dot­na with Natron’s own­er and pilot, Tim. You’ll soar over the Cook Inlet towards Mt. Iliamna Vol­cano and land on a beach, right where the bears are. You’ll watch them play­ing and clam­ming and be close enough to take amaz­ing photos.

Salmon Viewing Spots

Learn how the fish are raised from small alevin to fry and beyond to smolt size before being released into sur­round­ing lakes and bays. Depend­ing on the fish cycle, there may or may not be fish to view, so please call ahead. If there are no fish to be seen, you’re wel­come to look at a small pho­to gallery and learn about the fish pro­duc­tion cycle, and under­stand why hatchery’s play such an impor­tant role in keep­ing our fish population…  ...more

This wildlife sweet spot is worth a vis­it. The Russ­ian Lakes Trail begins off the access road to the Russ­ian Riv­er Camp­ground in Coop­er Land­ing, at mile­post 52 of the Ster­ling High­way. Get off-the-beat­en path, hike two miles to the falls and enjoy the imme­di­ate reward of spec­tac­u­lar salmon viewing. 

This is a day use site that offers 13 pic­nic sites with tables, a fish view­ing plat­form, water, toi­lets, an infor­ma­tion board, and fire grates.

Great sock­eye salmon obser­va­tion site, espe­cial­ly in late July and ear­ly August. At oth­er times of year it offers a mod­er­ate walk up to Ptarmi­gan Lake that’s great for fam­i­lies and fea­tures lots of bird life.

This salmon view­ing loca­tion includes an all-acc­ces­si­ble view­ing plat­form over­look­ing the creek as well as view­ing oppor­tun­ties along Ptarmi­gan Creek trail. Sock­eye salmon will be in the creek from late July to ear­ly Octo­ber with the best view­ing in mid-August. Vehi­cle park­ing is in the day use area inside Ptarmi­gan Creek Campground. 

View­ing is easy due to the all-acc­ces­si­ble view­ing plat­form and stream­side trail. Sock­eye, chum, pink, and sil­ver salmon will be vis­i­ble August — November

Look for the Russ­ian Riv­er Camp­ground (entry fee required) and park in the day-use park­ing areas with­in camp­ground facil­i­ties. A two mile well-main­tained grav­el trail leads to the view­ing plat­form above the falls or to the angler trail along the riv­er. Use cau­tion for high den­si­ties of brown and black bears who are fish­ing for the same Sock­eye and Coho salmon you are look­ing for. Salmon are in the riv­er mid June through Sep­tem­ber with the…  ...more

From the grav­el pull­out on the west side of the high­way, an easy 14 mile walk to the Sock­eye salmon view­ing plat­form awaits (not ful­ly acces­si­ble). Salmon are in the creek from mid-July to ear­ly August with the best view­ing in late July. 

Sounds Wild: Trees Need SalmonAs you dri­ve toward Sol­dot­na you will see the Kenai Riv­er on your left. This riv­er has thou­sands of salmon spawn­ing in it each year. Most­ly sock­eye or red salmon but also coho or sil­ver salmon, chi­nook or king salmon and pink or humpy salmon. After these salmon die, they float down­stream and are deposit­ed along the river­bank where they decom­pose and pro­vide food to the river­side plants.More Information   ...more

Turn on Quartz Creek Road and pro­ceed 2 miles to Quartz Creek Camp­ground. The stream is adja­cent to the pic­nic area and a trail expands Sock­eye and Coho salmon view­ing oppor­tu­ni­ties upstream or down­stream. Salmon view­ing takes place from late July to ear­ly Octo­ber with best view­ing in ear­ly August. 

Slikok Creek pass­es under Kali­fon­sky Rd. and fish can be seen spawn­ing near the cul­vert on both sides of the road. This is a crit­i­cal habi­tat area and you are asked not to wan­der along the banks of this very sen­si­tive stream. All view­ing can be done next to the road. Best salmon view­ing months are June and early-July. 

Walk out to the board­walks along the Kenai Riv­er, learn about river­ine habi­tat and the salmon life­cy­cle, and wit­ness the time­less dance of hunter and hunt­ed, of fish and fish­er. One year-round res­i­dent here will impress you with their win­ter sur­vival skills.

This park is the con­flu­ence of the Kenai and Moose Rivers. Take a break at this recre­ation site named for the Eng­lish author Iza­ak Wal­ton who wrote The Com­pleat Angler. Look for the infor­ma­tion­al sign to learn about the Moose Riv­er Archae­o­log­i­cal Site. You will also find a host­ed camp­ground and boat launch. There’s excel­lent fly-fish­ing in this area.

Difficulty: Easy

The trail is half a mile long and takes you through a mature birch for­est that is car­pet­ed with dev­il’s club and water­mel­on berry plants. It’s an easy walk­ing, ide­al for small chil­dren, and ends at a small camp­ing area on a slight bluff that over­looks Bish­op’s Beach and Bish­op Creek.

This spot in Ster­ling — at mile­post 82.3 at the Isaak Wal­ton Camp­ground — is where the Moose Riv­er meets the Kenai Riv­er, and the two rivers’ dif­fer­ing paces are dras­tic. The Moose Riv­er is very slow and wide, with almost no cur­rent — so much so that it feels more like a lake. The Kenai Riv­er, on the oth­er hand, flows fair­ly swift­ly in com­par­i­son, and the con­flu­ence can play strange tricks on your tackle.

The salmon life­cy­cle and a work­ing salmon-count­ing oper­a­tion is on the menu here, as well as a fresh salmon for your din­ner, if you time your vis­it just right. Hear how!

Grouse Creek runs adja­cent to the Seward High­way. To access this creek, exit onto the paved pull­out at mile 8.3. There’s a Chugach Nation­al For­est sign here too that marks the spot. From late- July to mid-Sep­tem­ber, you will be able to view sock­eye salmon with the best chance of see­ing fish in mid-August. 

Birding Spots

Difficulty: Easy

From the base of the Homer Spit, take this 4‑mile paved trail to the Nick Dudi­ak Fish­ing Lagoon. The trail is in excel­lent con­di­tion and is flat as a pan­cake for most of its length. The first mile of trail is along a broad estu­ary that is great for bird­ing. Once you pass the one-mile mark you’ll be rid­ing past fish­ing boats that are out of the water being worked on as well as a few shops.

Sounds Wild: Ravens Hot­Wher­ev­er there is food, you will find ravens and north­west crows. In fact crows love peo­ple and their food. At the Homer Small Boat Har­bor you can find these birds feed­ing along the shore, in the camp­grounds and perched on the sur­round­ing tele­phone poles and buildings.More Information 

To all the oth­er great rea­sons to vis­it Homer, add plen­ti­ful shore­birds, seabirds, marine mam­mals, and a ring of stun­ning moun­tain peaks sur­round­ing Kachemak Bay. The Islands and Ocean Vis­i­tors Cen­ter puts the icing on this cake.

More than 20,000 birds often nest on the cliff faces of this crag­gy island in Kachemak Bay about three miles south of the Homer Spit. See thou­sands of scream­ing kit­ti­wakes, babies cry­ing from nests, mur­res and puffins and oth­er seabirds div­ing off­shore for fish, lone bald eagles on the hunt for a meal.

Sounds Wild: Under­ground Seabird­sA great spot on the Kenai Penin­su­la to see a large group of seabirds nest­ing is Gull Island out of Homer. This short three-mile boat ride across Kachemak Bay is great for fam­i­lies. You’ll also find red-faced cor­morants, com­mon mur­res, puffins, eagles, mur­relets, sea otters, har­bor seals, sea lions and even whales.More Information   ...more

Sounds Wild: PhalaropesHun­dreds of red-necked phalaropes can be seen from the end of the Homer Spit dur­ing their spring and fall migra­tions. Look for these small birds spin­ning in cir­cles on the water. They do this to con­cen­trate food. These whirling liv­ing tops are a joy to watch. They tend to be in small flocks, which can make spot­ting them easier.More Information   ...more

Difficulty: Easy

Every­one wants to explore a tide­pool, don’t they? This is a must for the kids — even that lit­tle kid in those slight­ly more mature vis­i­tors. Here’s the per­fect spot. Bring a tow­el and let’s have an inter­tidal adventure.

At Homer’s main traf­fic light, at Lake Street and the Ster­ling High­way, be sure to stop on the south side of the road and look up — way up. You’ll like­ly get a glimpse of a big, messy eagle’s nest at the top of a dead spruce there, where in late sum­mer you might even see fluffy, rum­pled baby eagles peep­ing over the top. Look one tree over, too, to see if you can spot one of the par­ents stand­ing guard.If you don’t see the nest on the day you’re…  ...more

Above Homer, up East Hill and right on Sky­line Dri­ve a mile and a half (a beau­ti­ful dri­ve along the bluffs over­look­ing Homer), watch for the Wynn Nature Cen­ter, man­aged by the Cen­ter for Alaskan Coastal Stud­ies. You can stroll in the wilder­ness among the beau­ti­ful flo­ra and watch for wildlife or take a tour guid­ed by a well-informed naturalist.

As you dri­ve out East End Road about 4 miles you will see open fields, and like­ly the sand­hill cranes that fre­quent them.

Wit­ness giant trac­tors tow­ing the Kenai Penin­su­la’s fleet out to water’s edge and launch­ing them into the tide on their quest for fish. You can camp here, scout for wildlife, fish for steel­head, and enjoy some of the best puf­fin view­ing on the Kenai.

Sounds Wild: Loon­sAs you approach Sum­mit Lakes, look for com­mon loons. Most of the time they are found at the south­ern end of the lakes near the shore but can be any­where, so stop at the lodge and road pull­outs to look at the lake sur­face. Moose can some­times be seen in the marsh areas at the end of the lakes.More Information 

Sounds Wild: Birds Smell­Tern Lake has lots to offer but few peo­ple use the old Ster­ling high­way to access the bore­al for­est near this lake. Dri­ve into the recre­ation­al area and as you turn left toward the restrooms you will see an old road to your right. You can walk for miles down this road and enjoy the smell of the woods and the sound of the birds.More Information   ...more

Locat­ed at the inter­sec­tion of the Seward and Ster­ling high­ways at Mile­post 37. This area hosts a myr­i­ad of ani­mals, birds, fish, and unique plants. Com­mon loons, bald eagles, and arc­tic terns share the area with a vari­ety of song­birds and shore­birds like the north­ern water thrush, gold­en-crowned spar­row, and the greater yel­lowlegs. Beavers, riv­er otters, muskrats, and salmon ply the cold, clear waters of Tern Lake. Moose, Dall sheep, and…  ...more

You’ll either enjoy a peace­ful walk through a seclud­ed and beau­ti­ful estu­ary ripe with birdlife — or have a ring­side seat at the annu­al salmon dip­net­ting extrav­a­gan­za, fea­tur­ing hordes of crazed locals armed with 10-foot poles. The beach road emerges from the for­est at a riv­er-mouth lined by dunes, tidal­ly influ­enced beach, an estu­ary and broad salt marsh.

Def­i­nite­ly keep your eyes open here, there’s vol­ca­noes, bel­u­ga whales, har­bor seals, and tons of birdlife to be seen — depend­ing on the sea­son and weath­er, of course. Extra cred­it if you spot an owl!

Sounds Wild: Porky Babies­Porcu­pines are not often seen along the main paved roads of the Kenai Penin­su­la. You have to get off on the grav­el side roads that pass through their habi­tat. Tus­tu­me­na Lake road trav­els through the Kenai Wildlife Refuge and ends at the Kasilof Riv­er camp­ground. This road is great for view­ing var­i­ous birds includ­ing spruce grouse, thrush­es and chick­adees. Moose are found along this road and if you are real­ly lucky, a…  ...more

Stretch your legs here and check out one of the favorite rest stops for thou­sands of Kenai Riv­er salmon on their jour­ney home. We’ll also seek out giant trum­peter swans, red-necked grebes, and of course, fish­ers of anoth­er species — humans. Here at the con­flu­ence, the two rivers reveal their source waters in a very clear visu­al demonstration.

Not Steinbeck’s clas­sic nov­el, but a fan­tas­tic adven­ture, com­muning with a 30,000-member her­ring gull colony. It’s a one-of-a-kind expe­ri­ence you won’t want to miss.

Let’s go cari­bou-spot­ting on the wide open spaces at the mouth of the world-famous riv­er sys­tem. This spot is one of your best bets for view­ing these beau­ti­ful, state­ly beasts.

Walk out to the board­walks along the Kenai Riv­er, learn about river­ine habi­tat and the salmon life­cy­cle, and wit­ness the time­less dance of hunter and hunt­ed, of fish and fish­er. One year-round res­i­dent here will impress you with their win­ter sur­vival skills.

Sounds Wild: Alaska’s Drag­on­sWat­son Lake is a shal­low lake that is full of veg­e­ta­tion – just the right spot for drag­on­flies and oth­er crit­ters. Stand­ing at the boat launch and camp­ing area, look out across the lake for these large fly­ing insects. Red-necked grebes, rusty black­birds and loons are also found on the lake. Most lakes on the Kenai Penin­su­la can be a good spot for dragonflies.More Information   ...more

Sounds Wild: Moth­er Bat­sThis recre­ation­al site has a series of loop trails that pass two small lakes. Park in the park­ing lot and take the path to your left as you face the build­ings; this will lead you to the trail­head. The trail is great for view­ing wood­land birds and loons on the lake. As evening approach­es, look for bats fly­ing over the lake feed­ing on insects. Bats are hard to see because they are very secre­tive and do not become active…  ...more

Sounds Wild: Spar­rows­Sa­van­nah spar­rows love to sing and hide in the grass. How­ev­er, some­times they will perch on a fence, small trees or brush piles in this estu­ar­ine area. Walk along the beach toward the Kasilof Riv­er and look at the large flats to your right. In addi­tion to spar­rows you will see arc­tic terns, numer­ous her­ring, mew gulls and migrat­ing shore­birds in the spring and fall.More Information   ...more

Just south of Seward you could spot hump­back whales, sea lions, bird life and old growth for­est habi­tat. There’s a great sand beach at the end that will reward your explo­ration, so let’s go!

As the boat pulls away from the nest­ing areas of the horned puffins it will turn left and again stay right next to the cliff face. You’ll notice some pelag­ic and pos­si­bly red-faced cor­morants nest­ing high on the cliff just after the boat turns to the left for the final stretch of Cape Resurrection.

Here is the local favorite area of our Horned and Tuft­ed puffins. You can tell the two species apart if you remem­ber that Tough Guys Wear Black.” The tuft­ed puffin’s body is entire­ly black with dis­tinc­tive long yel­low tufts” of feath­ers on either side of their head. Horned puffins have a white bel­ly and black back. These puffins come to land only to lay their eggs and raise their young. Puffins spend most of their lives about 400 miles away…  ...more

Some of the lit­tle caves on the tip of the cape con­tain nest­ing Com­mon mur­res. You may also be see­ing many of these mur­res on the water. They have black heads, black backs and white bel­lies. They are Alcids, like the puffins, so they are div­ing birds that use their wings for propul­sion under water. Of all the alcids, com­mon mur­res can dive the deep­est, plung­ing to record depths of at least 600 feet​.In addi­tion to the cave nesters on the Cape,…  ...more

Up ahead the noise and odor of the Black legged Kit­ti­wakes will soon become appar­ent. These birds take advan­tage of the slight depres­sions in the rocks to build their nests. Their nest is sim­ply some grass and mud glued to the rock wall with their own guano. These birds nest in dense aggre­ga­tions as a means of pro­tec­tion against birds of prey.If a Bald eagle or Pere­grine fal­con flies into the area every bird will leave the rocks in one…  ...more

Just up ahead on the right is a small rock that sticks above the water and almost always has a mixed group of cor­morants stand­ing atop it dry­ing out their feath­ers. This long necked black bird dives in the water and uses its feet to swim but unlike the puffins and oth­er alcids has no oil in its feath­ers to aid in dry­ing off. So they stand out on rocks to get dry.Just up ahead on the left you will see a rock with many gulls on top of it and…  ...more

Eagle Viewing Spots

At the Seward Small Boat Har­bor look out at the rock jet­ties and buoys. Eagles like to sit on these spots and mon­i­tor their domain. Food is also plen­ti­ful from fish­er­man clean­ing fish, seabirds that stay in the area and fish that return to the streams nearby.

This is an easy place to watch an active eagle nest in the top of a spruce tree. There had been a nest pri­or to this one in a dead spruce but it fell in a past win­ter storm. The eagle pair quick­ly built this new nest a short dis­tance away in a live spruce. If you have time to watch, you may see the par­ents bring­ing in food for the young­ster. There is a lot of activ­i­ty at this nest and it is s great place to get good pho­tographs of…  ...more

Sounds Wild: Altri­cial­For many years an elder­ly lady fed eagles at this spot dur­ing the win­ter months: The Eagle Lady of Homer Spit.” Her house was right on the beach and she received fish waste from a local fish proces­sor, which she would then give to the hun­dreds of eagles that would show up for their dai­ly feed­ing. After she passed away this prac­tice of feed­ing the eagles was stopped.More Information   ...more

Difficulty: Easy

Every­one wants to explore a tide­pool, don’t they? This is a must for the kids — even that lit­tle kid in those slight­ly more mature vis­i­tors. Here’s the per­fect spot. Bring a tow­el and let’s have an inter­tidal adventure.

The spit has a rep­u­ta­tion for attract­ing decent num­bers of America’s nation­al bird — drawn by myr­i­ad poten­tial food sources from fish­er­men, seafood pro­cess­ing and a vast beach with a big tidal range and crash­ing surf.

Def­i­nite­ly keep your eyes open here, there’s vol­ca­noes, bel­u­ga whales, har­bor seals, and tons of birdlife to be seen — depend­ing on the sea­son and weath­er, of course. Extra cred­it if you spot an owl!

Difficulty: Easy

The trail is half a mile long and takes you through a mature birch for­est that is car­pet­ed with dev­il’s club and water­mel­on berry plants. It’s an easy walk­ing, ide­al for small chil­dren, and ends at a small camp­ing area on a slight bluff that over­looks Bish­op’s Beach and Bish­op Creek.

At the Sol­dot­na dump you can some­times see sev­er­al hun­dred eagles at once. 

Sounds Wild: Eagles Life­time MatesWant to see a soar­ing eagle up close? Stop at this site near the senior cen­ter and walk out toward the bluff – not too close as the bluff is erod­ing. Eagles play in the wind along the bluff. If not fly­ing they can be seen on the mud flats at low tide– look­ing for food that has washed downstream.More Information   ...more

Stop off here dur­ing the sum­mer for an eagle’s eye view of an annu­al Alaskan fish­ing fren­zy. We real­ly love our salmon, and it shows! Or, just count the bald eagles cir­cling high overhead.

Deep Creek North is locat­ed on the north side of Deep Creek; this area has 29 camp­sites for vehi­cles up to 50 feet.

Stop here for a view of the Ninilchik Riv­er and watch for bald eagles which often soar along the riv­er. You’ll also find walk­ing paths and an inter­pre­tive infor­ma­tion sign about the area.

Sheep & Mt. Goat Viewing Spots

The west­ern coast of out­er Res­ur­rec­tion Bay near Seward offers the state’s best oppor­tu­ni­ty to see wild goats up close, with ani­mals often perched on ledges just above the sea — mak­ing the area a pop­u­lar des­ti­na­tion dur­ing marine wildlife cruis­es out of Seward.

A pop­u­lar stop for wildlife view­ing, this shal­low, pro­duc­tive lake in the Kenai Moun­tains nes­tles between two immense faces that rise 3,000 to 4,000 feet above the val­ley floor. The slope to the north­east some­times draws both moun­tain goats and Dall sheep into the open, one of the few places where both species overlap.

Whale Watching Spots

Def­i­nite­ly keep your eyes open here, there’s vol­ca­noes, bel­u­ga whales, har­bor seals, and tons of birdlife to be seen — depend­ing on the sea­son and weath­er, of course. Extra cred­it if you spot an owl!

Anoth­er marine mam­mal you may encounter dur­ing this part of the trip is the Dal­l’s por­poise. This ani­mal is spot­ted when a repeat­ing splash pat­tern is seen on the sur­face of the water. The splash is called a roost­er tail” and is cre­at­ed by the dor­sal fin of the ani­mal cut­ting through the water at high speeds. The Dall por­poise can swim at least 35 mph and eas­i­ly pass this boat. How­ev­er, often times the por­poise will trav­el with the boat for a…  ...more

Just south of Seward you could spot hump­back whales, sea lions, bird life and old growth for­est habi­tat. There’s a great sand beach at the end that will reward your explo­ration, so let’s go!

Once we leave Bar­well Island the boat is as far out into the ocean as it gets. This is a good place to look for whales. Hump­back and Orca whales (killer whales) are the most like­ly to be spot­ted. Hump­backs are found by the ten foot tall cloud of mist that is formed when they exhale clear­ing their blow­hole. The obvi­ous fea­ture of the orca whale is its black dor­sal fin pen­e­trat­ing the sur­face. Male orca whales have a six foot high fin. Whale…  ...more

Sounds Wild: Thar She BlowsWhales, dol­phins, sea otters, har­bor seals and sea lions are all vis­i­ble in Kenai Fjords Nation­al Park. While you might see some of these ani­mals from shore, the best option is a day cruise out of Seward. A num­ber of com­pa­nies offer these ser­vices and you will not be dis­ap­point­ed. Glac­i­ers and birds top the list.More Information   ...more

Caribou Viewing Spots

Sounds Wild: Cari­bou Cari­bou can be seen any­where on the Kenai Riv­er estu­ar­ine area but are more fre­quent­ly seen on the east side of the Bridge Access Road. They have their calves here in the spring and feed the rest of the sum­mer and fall. They are com­mon­ly seen but there are no guar­an­tees with cari­bou. More Information 

Sea Lion Viewing Spots

In the water, there is a tri­an­gu­lar­ly shaped large rock with a small­er tri­an­gu­lar rock in the water to its right. Atop this small­er rock we hope to find a group of the Steller sea lions. If we do not spot them here, they will be a lit­tle fur­ther south on the beach. Look for var­i­ous sizes and col­ors of ani­mals. Dark grey ani­mals have just left the water, brown or tan ani­mals have been out a while and are dry­er. Ful­ly grown males have a very…  ...more

Moose Viewing Spots

Locat­ed on the shores of Upper Trail Lake, the town is sur­round­ed by the Chugach Nation­al For­est and is also home to the start of the Idi­tar­od trail, which was blazed through here in 1910. Since it seems to be just a dot on the road, though, it would be easy to miss — but it makes a great home base for vis­it­ing Seward or the Russ­ian Riv­er fish­ing area.

Sounds Wild: Pond-Bot­tom MooseThe wet­lands where the Kenai Spur High­way cross­es Beaver Creek are great for view­ing moose in the ear­ly morn­ing or late evening. Like most streams on the Kenai Penin­su­la, the stream­side veg­e­ta­tion con­sists of wil­lows- a favorite food of moose. Look to your right as you head toward Kenai and check out all the wet­land areas for the next cou­ple of miles.More Information   ...more

The Kenai Riv­er mean­ders through a sweep­ing salt marsh and wet­land on its final five-mile jour­ney to its mouth on Cook Inlet. While more well known for its immense flocks of migrat­ing birds and the pres­ence of a small herd of cari­bou, the estu­ary also draws moose into the open. 

Wildlife reg­u­lar­ly con­verges on this shal­low and very pro­duc­tive lake sur­round­ed by big, open slopes in the heart of the Kenai Moun­tains. Famous for attract­ing water­fowl and migrat­ing birds,Tern Lake also draws moose to the bound­aries between mead­ows and for­est, espe­cial­ly ear­ly and late in the day.