Get ready for a glacier adventure you will never forget!
This exclusive Juneau tour will take you on a canoe paddle over an iceberg-filled lake, walk on top of the Mendenhall Glacier, and explore it's deep blue glacial pools and crevasses. Every portion of this tour boasts stunning views and unforgettable environments. The exclusivity of this limited-capacity excursion provides an up-close experience with the glacier away from the crowds.
Your tour guide will transport you from the cruise ship terminal in downtown Juneau to the Mendenhall Glacier. The adventure starts with a native-style canoe paddle across Mendenhall Lake, which is brimming with icebergs and expansive views of the glacier from the water. Along the way, enjoy learning about the Mendenhall Glacier, Alaska's history, the local community, traditional ways of life, and the unique Alaska environment from your friendly and entertaining guide.
After the scenic paddle, your knowledgeable guide(s) will beach the canoe next to the base of the glacier and lead your group on a hike onto the glacier's surface with 360-degree views of expansive untouched natural beauty. You will be able to document this experience of a lifetime with multiple photo opportunities; so don't forget your camera!
Glaciers are constantly changing and so are glacial features including the famous Mendenhall Glacier Ice Caves. If our guides locate a glacier ice cave, you'll be able to explore it's stunning blue walls and ceiling under safe conditions. We cannot guarantee any specific glacial features including caves.
The tour concludes with a return paddle across Mendenhall Lake and transportation back to the cruise ship terminal.
Inclusions: Bottled water and light snack. Waterproof rain jackets, rain pants, rubber boots, helmet, life jacket, and crampons for the glacier hike portion.
Please Note: Mendenhall Glacier Ice Cave exploration is dependent on glacier conditions and access cannot be predicted. When caves are accessible, safe entrance will be determined by tour guides on an individual tour basis. Time of year and daily weather are not contributing factors to ice cave formation and safe access. There are no patterns to determine when a cave might form.
Minimum age for participation on this tour is 12 years old. Guests must be between 90-240lbs for life jackets to fit. Full use of limbs is required for this tour with moderate physical activity required.
This tour operates under permit with the Tongass National Forest and is an equal opportunity provider.
Duration: 5-5.5 hours (Roundtrip from cruise ship terminal. Paddle time: 2 hours. Glacier time: 1-1.5 hours)
- Roundtrip transportation from cruise ship terminal
- Bottled water, snack, and beverage
- Gear/equipment: Rain jacket, rain pants, life vest, helmet, rain boots, crampons for glacier hike
- Minimum age: 12 years old
- Minimum weight: 90lbs
- Maximum wight: 240lbs
- Not recommended for guests with back or hip problems
- Pregnant guests will not be allowed on this tour
- Full use of limbs for up to 2 hours canoe paddling
- Ability to hike over steep uneven terrain for approximately 1 mile
- Signed liability waiver
Duration: 5-5.5 hours. Tour times below are approximate:
- 30 minutes transport to glacier launch site
- 30 minutes equipment and safety briefing
- 1 hour lake canoe paddle
- 1-1.5 hours glacier hike exploration
- 1 hour lake canoe paddle
- 30 minutes gear unload and snack break
- 30 minutes transport to cruise ship terminal
- This tour meets in front of the Mt. Robert's Tramway building. Fully detailed instructions are included on your finalized ticket vouchers.
ADA Accessibility of Tour:
- This tour is not wheelchair or limited mobility accessible.
My cruise ship arrives at 7:00am, will I be able to make the 7:15am tour time?
Yes! When arriving on the Norwegian Bliss or Norwegian Jewel, you will be greeted by our tour guides in front of your cruise ship. It is important that you are ready to exit the ship upon arrival in order to have ample time to meet your guides.
Will we visit any ice caves while on this tour?
Ice Cave exploration is dependent on glacier conditions and access cannot be predicted. When caves are accessible, safe entrance will be determined by tour guides on an individual tour basis. Time of year and daily weather are not contributing factors to ice cave formation and safe access.
Do I have to paddle?
Yes! We will be using a native-style paddle canoe and everyone is expected to paddle along with the guide.
How large is the canoe?
There are 2 different sizes of canoes that are used. One style holds up to 10 guests and the other holds up to 14 guests.
How close will I get to the glacier?
You will be on Mendenhall Lake during the canoe portion of the tour and once ashore, you will be hiking on the Mendenhall Glacier itself. From the canoe, you will get about 200 yards away from the glacier.
Will I see any wildlife or bears on this tour?
Bald eagles, herons, shorebirds, artic terns and waterfowl are all common sights, however this is not a designated wildlife tour and specific wildlife cannot be guaranteed.
Is it safe to walk on the glacier?
The glacier surface is not slippery like you would imagine, but you will be outfitted with crampons just in case for extra traction. You will be with an experienced guide(s) the entire tour.
Is it cold on the glacier?
The temperature really depends on the weather, but expect the temperature on the glacier to be 5-10 degrees cooler.
Can I bring a backpack?
Yes, small bags will be allowed during this tour.
Can I bring my own food or drink?
Food and drink are allowed during this tour, but there are no waste bins, so you are responsible for transporting your own garbage.
Are food and drink included?
Yes, a complimentary bottle of water is provided along with a light snack and warm beverage at the conclusion of the tour.
Are there any physical requirements for this tour?
Minimum weight is 90lbs, maximum weight is 240lbs. You must have full use of limbs to get in and out of the canoe, and to assist in paddling the canoe across the lake. You must be able to endure approximately 1 mile of hiking on uneven terrain and 2 hours of canoe paddling.
What type of clothing should I wear?
Weather depending, you are encouraged to wear gloves and light layers. We'll provide you with waterproof jackets, pants, and boots.
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