Chilkoot Trail Hike & Float
Follow the footsteps of the 1898 gold rush stampeeders. Hike the beginning of the historic Chilkoot Trail and then experience Alaska’s majesty with a gentle float down the Taiya River.
- Rafting towards the mouth of the Taiya River
- Hike the 1st two miles of the historic Chilkoot Trail
- Leaving the dock, we'll drive about 20 minutes to scenic Dyea
- Expert naturalist guides enjoy sharing their love of Alaska
- Floating down the gentle Taiya River
- Guides row the oars... sit back, take photos & enjoy the scenery
- At the take out, enjoy hot drinks & a cookie
This world famous trail was the main route to the riches of the Klondike during the gold rush. Now a tranquil place of incredible beauty, the trail winds through a lush rainforest alive with birds, animals and wildflowers. Enjoy the exercise, fresh air, beautiful scenery, pristine forests, and history of a bygone era as the trail takes you up and over the 350' tall Saintly Hill. Along the way, your guide weaves an entertaining mix of natural history and Klondike folklore. Photo opportunities abound as you retrace the footsteps of the gold-hungry stampeders who forged this route 100 years ago.
Arrive at the banks of the Taiya River, where your 18-foot raft awaits for the scenic float (no whitewater) back to Dyea. The forest gives way to fields of beach greens and wild iris, and the granite walls of the fjords rise steeply to the snow-capped peaks and hanging glaciers. Enjoy a riverside snack of homemade cookies and a hot beverage and countless picture-perfect moments before returning by van on the 30-minute drive to Skagway.
(~35 minutes) - From the small boat harbor we’ll board a van and head toward Dyea and the Chilkoot Trail. Along the way you’ll enjoy a driving town tour of Skagway and the scenic coastal gravel road to Dyea.
(~120 minutes) - Once we arrive in Dyea, your guide will get you outfitted with trekking poles and you’ll have the opportunity to use the restroom before we begin tracing the Gold Rush stampeders’ steps along the first two miles of the Historic Chilkoot Trail.
(~10 minutes) - At the end of the hike your guide will get you outfitted with a PFD and rubber boots and provide a safety briefing as we prepare for the scenic float down the Taiya River.
(~35 minutes) - Sit back and enjoy as your experienced river guide rows you down the scenic Taiya River. The stable 18’ raft provides a great platform for photography and taking in the sweeping mountain, ocean and rainforest views.
(~15 minutes) - Once we reach the riverside raft take-out, you’ll be treated to a homemade cookie and hot cocoa and hot tea and some free time to take in the dramatic landscape with the supplied spotting scope.
(~30 minutes) - From here we’ll load back into the van to enjoy the comfortable ride back to Skagway.
Your guide will meet you 15 minutes prior to the tour start time to make sure all necessary paperwork is completed. If you are arriving by cruise ship, your guide will meet you at the end of the pier that your ship docks at. Otherwise the meeting location is the Small Boat Harbor sign. CLICK HERE to see a map detailing these locations in Skagway. Your guide will be holding a sign that says "Skagway and Haines Excursions".
Who are my guides?
You guides are experts in the industry. They are fun, well-trained and passionate about guiding and sharing their expert knowledge about the history and natural wonder of Haines and Skagway, Alaska with you! Our staff all go through extensive training and hold current first-aid (mostly WFR and WEMT) certification. Many of our guides also lead courses and guided expedition trips for us both in Alaska and throughout the world.
Is there a bathroom?
Yes – restrooms are available on the dock prior to departing for your tour and a non-flushing “outhouse” style restroom is at the start of the hike.
Do you cancel due to weather?
Our tours embrace Southeast Alaska’s unpredictable weather. Our tours run rain or shine. If in a rare instance weather does cause us to cancel the tour you will be refunded in full and provided with assistance with finding an alternative activity for the day.
How long is the trail?
The tour hikes along the first 1.6-2 miles of the historic Chilkoot Trail.
What is the trail like?
We’ll be hiking over uneven, natural terrain. There are exposed roots, rocks and sometimes slippery or muddy sections. The trail gains and descends 350’ over the course of the two mile hike.
What wildlife will I see?
Though wildlife can never be guaranteed, Bald Eagles, ravens, squirrels and harbor seals are frequently seen in Skagway. Skagway’s unique landscape somewhat isolate’s it from many of the larger mammals apart from the occasional black bear or coastal brown bear.
Is there any whitewater on the float?
No – there will be no whitewater or rapids on the float.
For increased availability and convenience, book through your cruise line today:
Or use our online booking system:
*Price is per adult in USD, taxes not included.
I wanted to say how much I enjoyed the Chilkook Trail Hike and Float which I booked through Holland America Line. It was the highlight of my Alaskan adventure. I just couldn't stop talking about it afterwards! Our guide Ken was fantastic. Thank you for this wonderful experience.
- Eugene C.
We were told by our Cruise Ship adviser that this was a terrific excursion, and boy was it ever. You take a great hike, full of history and nature. Our tour guide, Zach, was knowledgeable and helpful, and he really knew his plant life and explained in detail how the forest in Alaska worked. It was one of our favorite trips off the ship. The scenery is spectacular. Everyone who took the hike talked of how they would do it again, which is a good sign in Alaska. It was my first trip to Alaska, and the beauty is mind-blowing.
- Tom F.
Absolutely beautiful hike on the Chilkoot Trail. Our guide Josh was friendly and knowledgeable. The trail was challenging in parts but well maintained and walking sticks were provided to help manage the tricky parts. The scenery was breathtaking. The float down the river was the perfect way to finish off a great excursion.