Chilkat Bald Eagle Preserve

Chilkat Bald Eagle Preserve

Chilkat Bald Eagle Preserve
4.5
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One of the best places to view the bald eagle.
Meets animal welfare guidelines
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4.5
4.5 of 5 bubbles282 reviews
Excellent
194
Very good
56
Average
24
Poor
5
Terrible
3

Cruiser209
South Lake Tahoe, CA17 contributions
1.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2022
We booked this trip through the company’s website on April 14, 2022 which was a month before our trip. We were confirmed by the company and paid in full. Our friends from Maine booked with us to do this trip. The night before, the company asked us to meet them earlier than originally schedules. We reconfirmed and met them the next working at the agreed time. We were ready to go. The company reps were all confused, had no paperwork and were completely unorganized and overwhelmed. The company had overbooked the guests on the trip and had no clue how many they had and who was supposed to be on the trip. It was a complete amateur operation with panic, lack of communication and major confusion. After numerous phone calls, passenger counts and other BS, we were told that Princess Cruises had overbooked and we would not be allowed on the trip. We did not book through Princess but we were told all the Princess Cruise passengers had to be placed on the trip. Every raft was overbooked . We were there for this day only so they couldn’t and wouldn’t help us. We went back to Princess Cruise and told them what happened and they claim they did not overbook. This company is not to be trusted as it is a complete flight by night operation with no regard for booked guests.
Written 31 May 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Betty49
Boston36 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2022
We took the fast ferry from Skagway to Haines which is about 45 minutes, then a terrible bus ride on a dirt road due to construction, which will be ongoing for a few years. The bus was an old school bus and the ride was another 45 minutes (awful). The jet boat ride down the river was nice, but they advertised the area as an Eagle Preserve and we only saw one Eagle sitting in a tree. This excursion is overpriced in my opinion. The lunch was delicious, a chicken wrap, chips and a brownie.
Written 19 July 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Seaside1128
Sydney, Australia4 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
September 2004

Hi, Just found this site and wanted to say I had the best time in Alaska, I'll be back.
I went on the Chilkat Bald Eagle Preserve tour and had a ball. CP who was the main tour guide was great, informative, energetic, enthusiastic and hillarious. I have attached some photos of him catching a spawning salmon by hand (which bit him), whilst his raft kept floating down stream. I have never laughed so hard in my life, I nearly fell out of the raft I was in.
John (Texan tour guide) that I had was great also. Kept us entertained and on the lookout for all the magnificent wildlife you have there in Alaska, being from Sydney Australia we don't get to see your animals in the wild. It was an experience I'll never forget.
Haines was just such a beautiful place, those views are worth bottling.

Thanks for the laughs and fond memories CP & John, love your work. Drop me a line sometime if you read this

Belinda
Written 16 March 2005
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

ColdCorona
Idaho329 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Nov 2014 • Business
The Chilkat valley is an incredible place and scenery regardless of the time of year but, if you want to see the most eagles, you have to come in winter when the salmon are spawning. The 'window' for best viewing depends on both the salmon numbers and weather, specifically the elevation of the river. The lower the river flow, the more salmon are available for the eagles. This window generally runs from November to December but can last longer into late January depending on the year.

The preserve itself has several pull outs for viewing as well as a boardwalk area near the river with a lookout platform. There are two larger parking areas with the first (closest to Haines) having a park service style bathroom (no water). The best area for viewing varies based on where the eagles are feeding as well as the river channel distance from the viewing area. The river channels are braided and change every year so you need to drive the preserve first to get a feel for where the gravel and sand bars are that are closest to viewing shoreline. The eagles locations change throughout the day.

Eagles are scavengers so will eat live or dead salmon as well as steal them from seagulls and other eagles. If you are expecting the eagles to snatch the salmon from the river, it is rare. The highlight of eagle watching is the aerial combat that takes place when incoming eagles attempt to push eating eagles off food. This can range from intindating lower strafing fly-bys to full on attacks with talons out and resulting the the feeding bird being knocked onto the ground or into the water. Occasionally, the defending bird will do a acrobatic maneuver that is basically a backflip and lock talons momentarily with the incoming bird.

If just viewing, bring good binoculars. If there for photography, a good digital zoom will get decent photos since many eagles rest in the trees above the viewing shoreline. For professionals, recommend 500, 600 or 800mm lens as well as a 1.4 or 1.7 telecoverter (depending on what body you are shooting with). In both cases, take plenty of warm gear including pack style insulated boots.
Written 27 November 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

AndyLong_FirstLight
Lakewood, Colorado52 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Nov 2015 • Business
Again the preserve lived up to its expectations for the people I had with me on my photo workshop this year. The eagles gathered at 21 mile put on a great show and everyone in my group went home with lots of great eagle photos. Can't wait to come back again next year.
Written 30 November 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Mike S
Prospect, KY182 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2012 • Friends
We toured this with friends as part of our Princess cruise. If your tour voucher says "Wildlife Not Guaranteed", assume you will see little or none. We took the ferry from Skagway to Haines and then a bus ride to the tour location. Our bus driver was excellent in providing a review of what it is like to live in the area. Actually, she was the highlight of the trip. The family run business tries to accommodate everyone with blankets and ear/hand protectors for the boat ride. The jet boat goes several miles into the preserve and then turns and comes back to the tour camp for a hot dog roast. We were only to view 3 eagles on our trip, and our guide, Jamie, never stopped the boat on our return trip to see anything. So we were left with about a 1/2 river trip. This was also the only tour we took in our 10 day excursion where the guide directly mentioned a tip and we felt pressured to provide one.
Written 19 August 2012
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

carzim59
Milan, Italy269 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2017 • Family
Booked this tour through Royal Caribbean and paid just over $200 per person. We really enjoyed the rafting, with Evan as our guide. He's clearly skilled at navigating the raft and we felt confident being aboard with him. I think our disappointment was that so much of the day was spent traveling to and from and not so much of our day was spent rafting. Even on the raft, the actual distance you raft is limited because the start to finish isn't too long and the guides are mindful of keeping up with the boats to make sure no boats are left stuck behind. So, while initially gathering at 7:30, you wait for almost an hour while everyone is collected, take a 45 minute ferry, wait some more while people make bathroom stops and then take a bus another 30 minutes. Then you are given boots and life jackets and slowly make your way to the boats...another 20 or 30 minutes. After the rafting a quick lunch is offered and your back on the bus and ferry. So there's a lot of travel time for a limited number of time rafting. We were also hoping to see a bit more wildlife. Eagles were abundant, but that's it...nothing else was around. However, the area is quite stunning and made for some good photographs along the journey. So, all in all, the rafting was pretty good and I'd happily do that again, but since it is such a limited portion of your 6 hours excursion, I'm not sure I'd recommend it to others in the future.
Written 12 July 2017
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Splanky
Claymont, DE355 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2014 • Couples
We booked an excursion through our cruise, "Eagle Preserve Rafting & Wildlife Quest" and we were glad we did! We understood that this was not the prime season for eagles. However, the fast ferry from Skagway, the folks who met us and narrated on the bus up the river and guided us down the river on rafts were all great! We saw many eagles and nests, fish, many other birds, mountain sheep in the distance and quiet, uninterrupted nature surrounded by snow capped mountains! It was wonderful and relaxing.
Written 22 May 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

grizzMaryland
Maryland28 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Nov 2012 • Couples
We went for the festival a few years ago, beautiful snowy days, hundreds of eagles.... an amazing experience. Check out the photos on their facebook site... beautiful
Written 23 January 2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Jeff T
Doha, Qatar520 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2012 • Family
We went with our young kids and they enjoyed the float trip as much as seeing the eagles. We had excellent weather. The tour guides were fun and helpful and the photos were wonderful. Bring a telephoto or you may find you have some pretty hard to explain shots of mountains with little white specks for eagles. A relaxing way to float down a river, see some wildlife and hear about the area on the way up and back. Perfect for kids.
Written 24 September 2012
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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Chilkat Bald Eagle Preserve - All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go (2024) - Tripadvisor

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