The Stikine Icefield is one of the few remnants of the once-vast ice sheets that covered much of North America during the Pleistocene age. It covers 2,900 square miles along the crest of the Coastal Mountains that separate Canada and the U.S., extending 120 miles from the Whiting River to the Stikine River.
Near the south end of the Stikine Icefield, LeConte Glacier is the southernmost active tidewater glacier in the northern hemisphere. Since first charted in 1887, it has retreated almost 2.5 miles. Today, LeConte is considered in a stable position. Due to the deep water (810 feet) of the bay, LeConte calves instead of advancing.
Harbor seals choose LeConte's protected water and abundant icebergs as a breeding, birthing, and rearing area. Remember not to disturb these little ones. Abandonment of a young pup by its mother is a common occurrence, particularly if they are disturbed by hunting or other activities by humans.
Join us in viewing the glacier calving up close, as well as the hundreds of harbor seals perched on the icebergs filling the bay. Depending on the tides the day of your trip, the community of Petersburg will be an optional stop on our return to Wrangell.
What To Expect
LeConte-Tour length is 4 hours. We depart from Wrangell for a 1 hour boat ride to the glacier bay through an area named Dry Straight. This channel is only accessible at a certain point in the tide, as it is almost totally dry at low tide. Upon arriving at the bay, we’ll dodge through icebergs at our cruising speed to reach the face of the glacier. We’ll stay at the face of the glacier for as long as time permits, before making our way back the way we came to Wrangell.
Leconte/Petersburg-Tour length is approximately 7 hours. When tides do not allow us to travel through Dry Straight, we take the long way through the Wrangell Narrows. This allows us to stop in neighboring town of Petersburg for lunch and to stretch our legs. After a quick stop, we make our way to the glacier as we would on the shorter route. Depending on the tides, we may go to Petersburg before or after the glacier.
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LeConte-$240 per person
LeConte/Petersberg—$300 per person
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