Alaska Excursions

Alaska Excursions

A wide range of trips throughout Southcentral Alaska.

Iditarod 41

Photos and stories from the last great race.

Anchorage: 33°/53°/Partly sunny

Fairbanks: 29°/53°/Partly sunny

Juneau: 38°/53°/Cloudy

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Southeast Alaska is warm and rainy

More on Feature of the day

Painter brings odd Alaska dinosaur to life

It may have been the ugliest dinosaur ever. But Pachyrhinosaurus perotorum, an arctic-dwelling relative of the three-horned Triceratops, was uniquely Alaskan, a species whose existence was only announced by scientists last fall. In the atrium of the main entrance of University Center Mall, Anchorage artist James Havens is depicting the beast on a 10-foot-by-10-foot canvas daily from noon to 8 p.m.

Ferry times to Alaska

People coming to Alaska often get on the state ferry at Bellingham, Wash., and float north to Haines, where they head up a road to the Alaska Highway. How long is the Bellingham-Haines trip?

Flight time to Anchorage

A flight to Anchorage from Seattle, the most commonly used connection point, takes about 3 hours 30 minutes.

Getting to Alaska

Many of Anchorage's visitors fly into or out of Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport, west of downtown.

Vacationers have a wide variety of ways to get to Alaska.

Steady precipitation keeps the region green

Southeast Alaska is a land of rain forests, salmon streams and glaciers, all made possible by the wealth of precipitation driven in off the Gulf of Alaska.

The Inside Passage has the highest annual precipitation averages in the state as well as the highest average temperatures. For anglers, kayakers, hikers and cruise ship passengers, jackets and rain gear are almost always appropriate. Rubber boots are worn so frequently that they're known as "Alaska tennis shoes" and "Sitka slippers."

Rainy towns

Ketchikan averages 150 inches of precipitation a year, almost 3 times Juneau's total and 10 times what Anchorage gets. Yakutat, near enormous Malaspina Glacier, averages 145 inches of precipitation, including the meltwater from 193 inches of snow. Year to year, the wettest place in the state is Little Port Walter, which averages 220 inches.

Juneau gets more than 18 hours of sunlight at the summer solstice in June but less than 6.5 hours at the winter solstice. Ketchikan, 250 miles south of Juneau, gets less (17.5 hours) at the summer solstice but more (7 hours) in December.

Monthly averages for the Inside Passage

Here are monthly averages -- high temperature, low temperature, precipitation (inches of rain and melted snow), snowfall and snow depth for Southeast locations: Angoon, Annette, Glacier Bay, Gustavus, Haines, Hollis, Juneau, Ketchikan, Petersburg, Sitka, Skagway, Wrangell and Yakutat.

ANGOON

(Western side of Admiralty Island)
Period of record: 9/1/1949 to 4/30/1989

Average annual
high temperature
Average annual
low temperature
Average annual
total precipitation
Average annual
total snowfall
47.636.942.1965.3

JanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec
Max
temp
31.836.740.847.053.458.862.061.556.548.439.834.1
Min
temp
23.427.129.833.939.845.649.849.745.439.232.327.1
Precip-
tation
3.512.862.482.221.911.902.313.784.847.724.544.13
Snow-
fall
17.313.88.82.10.00.00.00.00.00.46.516.4
Snow
depth
794100000014

ANNETTE

(Inside Passage near Metlakatla, south of Ketchikan)
Period of record: 9/1/1949 to 12/31/2000

Average annual
high temperature
Average annual
low temperature
Average annual
total precipitation
Average annual
total snowfall
51.340.4108.9646.1

JanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec
Max
temp
38.741.844.249.555.860.764.264.559.851.644.340.4
Min
temp
29.432.233.637.242.748.152.052.348.141.835.331.8
Precip-
tation
10.038.998.558.026.264.874.696.989.7815.9012.8112.06
Snow-
fall
12.010.08.12.30.10.00.00.00.00.23.49.9
Snow
depth
110000000001

GLACIER BAY

(National park in northern Panhandle)
Period of record: 1/1/1966 to 12/31/2000

Average annual
high temperature
Average annual
low temperature
Average annual
total precipitation
Average annual
total snowfall
46.534.970.07115.2

JanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec
Max
temp
30.934.038.245.853.660.362.960.754.045.937.633.6
Min
temp
22.525.128.432.738.343.647.046.542.436.830.025.4
Precip-
tation
6.224.843.852.983.622.764.006.009.8211.567.476.97
Snow-
fall
34.523.314.11.40.00.00.00.00.01.415.524.9
Snow
depth
21292715100000411

GUSTAVUS

(Northern Panhandle town, gateway to Glacier Bay National Park)
Period of record: 9/1/1949 to 12/31/2000

Average annual
high temperature
Average annual
low temperature
Average annual
total precipitation
Average annual
total snowfall
47.733.854.0072.7

JanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec
Max
temp
29.835.738.447.954.960.963.663.257.347.838.433.8
Min
temp
17.823.124.932.138.144.548.247.042.035.827.624.1
Precip-
tation
4.023.682.762.442.922.523.614.766.768.676.005.86
Snow-
fall
17.415.011.22.00.30.00.00.00.00.98.317.4
Snow
depth
663000000014

HAINES

(Northern Panhandle, road/ferry terminal)
Period of record: 6/21/1973 to 10/31/1999

Average annual
high temperature
Average annual
low temperature
Average annual
total precipitation
Average annual
total snowfall
48.335.248.04122.6

JanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec
Max
temp
28.933.840.249.357.964.266.365.658.147.735.831.5
Min
temp
18.623.027.034.342.248.651.249.043.837.125.422.2
Precip-
tation
5.444.552.922.531.491.411.402.315.249.186.155.43
Snow-
fall
31.527.28.92.20.10.00.00.00.22.222.128.3
Snow
depth
131030000000512

HOLLIS

(Ferry port for Prince of Wales Island, southern Panhandle)
Period of record: 5/6/1949 to 12/24/1994

Average annual
high temperature
Average annual
low temperature
Average annual
total precipitation
Average annual
total snowfall
51.037.4105.0046.2

JanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec
Max
temp
36.739.443.149.758.162.866.465.959.049.642.038.9
Min
temp
27.328.029.933.339.645.449.449.543.938.432.830.8
Precip-
tation
10.538.597.576.704.373.183.374.889.7016.5314.9114.66
Snow-
fall
25.76.21.70.10.00.00.00.00.00.05.07.5
Snow
depth
220000000013

JUNEAU

(Northern Panhandle)
Period of record: 9/1/1949 to 12/31/2000

Average annual
high temperature
Average annual
low temperature
Average annual
total precipitation
Average annual
total snowfall
47.234.456.4798.4

JanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec
Max
temp
29.034.238.747.555.361.664.062.756.047.037.732.5
Min
temp
18.223.026.632.439.245.348.447.643.236.928.523.4
Precip-
tation
4.263.923.482.933.533.134.295.347.217.865.435.09
Snow-
fall
26.819.614.42.80.00.00.00.00.01.111.721.8
Snow
depth
663000000014

KETCHIKAN

(Fishing, logging, cruise port in southern Panhandle)
Period of record: 9/1/1949 to 12/31/2000

Average annual
high temperature
Average annual
low temperature
Average annual
total precipitation
Average annual
total snowfall
51.939.4150.8236.9

JanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec
Max
temp
38.842.244.550.356.761.665.265.460.452.044.940.7
Min
temp
27.931.432.536.241.447.151.151.647.240.934.731.1
Precip-
tation
12.713.010.711.39.27.37.310.613.822.317.115.4
Snow-
fall
13.38.93.40.30.10.00.00.00.00.12.38.6
Snow
depth
310000000001

PETERSBURG

(Fishing port in southern Panhandle)
Period of record: 9/1/1983 to 12/31/2000

Average annual
high temperature
Average annual
low temperature
Average annual
total precipitation
Average annual
total snowfall
50.236.2110.4565.7

JanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec
Max
temp
36.038.343.551.157.862.665.164.158.149.340.036.6
Min
temp
25.526.229.834.340.045.248.547.242.937.430.027.0
Precip-
tation
11.369.118.326.136.094.954.946.0811.6916.1613.9711.65
Snow-
fall
16.916.17.40.90.00.00.00.00.00.910.013.5
Snow
depth
663000000025

SITKA

(Fishing, cruise port on Gulf of Alaska side of Panhandle)
Period of record: 9/1/1949 to 12/31/2000

Average annual
high temperature
Average annual
low temperature
Average annual
total precipitation
Average annual
total snowfall
49.539.786.3739.3

JanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec
Max
temp
37.940.542.847.953.257.760.862.058.150.443.439.6
Min
temp
29.431.332.636.141.446.851.151.947.841.435.131.9
Precip-
tation
7.246.36.044.954.73.464.276.810.9813.49.538.68
Snow-
fall
10.08.37.31.30.00.00.00.00.00.33.58.7
Snow
depth
221000000001

SKAGWAY

(Cruise port in northern Panhandle)
Period of record: 7/1/1965 to 12/31/2000

Average annual
high temperature
Average annual
low temperature
Average annual
total precipitation
Average annual
total snowfall
48.634.226.4549.9

JanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec
Max
temp
25.733.040.350.859.166.268.065.858.048.036.132.0
Min
temp
15.621.627.232.139.646.750.148.443.736.726.122.3
Precip-
tation
2.231.941.431.051.531.121.122.194.064.492.962.33
Snow-
fall
14.610.03.51.00.10.00.00.00.01.28.611.0
Snow
depth
210000000011

WRANGELL

(Fishing, cruise port in southern Panhandle)
Period of record: 9/1/1949 to 12/31/2000

Average annual
high temperature
Average annual
low temperature
Average annual
total precipitation
Average annual
total snowfall
49.437.179.3054.6

JanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec
Max
temp
33.137.642.249.156.261.864.363.657.849.541.136.2
Min
temp
23.527.230.635.140.646.049.549.445.438.831.727.1
Precip-
tation
6.395.735.224.704.383.964.635.639.0412.848.947.86
Snow-
fall
17.811.96.90.80.00.00.00.00.00.14.812.4
Snow
depth
331000000002

YAKUTAT

(Fishing, logging port south of Wrangell-St. Elias National Park)
Period of record: 9/1/1949 to 12/31/2000

Average annual
high temperature
Average annual
low temperature
Average annual
total precipitation
Average annual
total snowfall
45.932.4145.92193.5

JanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec
Max
temp
31.135.338.544.450.656.359.760.155.547.338.333.5
Min
temp
17.821.323.229.236.543.547.846.641.134.226.121.8
Precip-
tation
11.2510.5410.49.259.36.438.1412.118.2620.8515.014.39
Snow-
fall
36.137.037.316.91.20.00.00.00.05.421.837.6
Snow
depth
1517201110000039

Source: National Weather Service.

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