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Salmon run in August

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California
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288 posts
4 reviews
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Salmon run in August

I will be in Ketchikan for the day during the first week of August and I'd like to see the salmon swimming upstream and maybe even see bears fishing (I know, it's nature, no guarantees). Is there a good spot in town to see the salmon that is walking distance (or city bus) from the cruise dock? I thought I'd read there was a salmon ladder, but I don't know if it's in town.

Does anyone have a link to a detailed city map so I can figure out where things are? Can you walk to Saxman totem poles & Rotary beach from the dock?

Ukiah, California
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1. Re: Salmon run in August

Salmon should be running up Ketchikan Creek in August. That's where the salmon ladder is, just up the creek from Creek Street.

There is a map and lots of information about the borough bus at their website:

…ketchikan.ak.us/publicworks/bus/businfo.htm

As Steven Wright said, everywhere is walking distance if you have the time. Saxman is about two and a half miles south of the dock. The first mile is sidewalk through the industrial zone, oil tanks, canneries, container facilities, and the Coast Guard base, then it's a nice walk along the water on the bike trail. Rotary Beach is about three and a half miles south, and most of the last mile there is no bike path or shoulder along the road.

Hope that helps.

San Diego...
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2. Re: Salmon run in August

You can also get an all day pass for the public bus for $2 when you get on the bus. I don't know if they stop at Saxman but they do go to Totem Bight, very scenic and on the water Bus runs on an hourly schedule there and it only takes about 40 minutes to get all your pictures. For both directions walk to the TUNNEL you see from the dock. Blue stops both ways just before you enter the tunnel. check at visitor's center for confidence.

New Zealand
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3. Re: Salmon run in August

Lessa asks about bears near Ketchikan; I have been wondering the same. A couple of guide-books suggest there are places you can see them fairly cheaply (as opposed to $250 USD or so per person to Neets Bay, nearly double that by float plane).

Is there anywhere in walking distance, or is the Bear Creek zip line really any good for seeing bears? (Also travelling first week of August), or is it worth paying up for a more 'guaranteed' trip?

Ukiah, California
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4. Re: Salmon run in August

I would say your best chance for seeing a bear on a lower-priced tour is the Rainforest Sanctuary walking tour. That's in the same area (Herring Cove) as the Bear Creek and Canopy zip lines, but you're on the ground instead of flying through the air on a wire. Maybe a 10 to 20 per cent chance of seeing a bear or two at a distance.

With the Neets Bay trips you're almost assured of seeing many bears fishing very close to you. Although one poster's friend didn't have a good experience there one time.

Almost all of town is along the shoreline with rainforest uphill, the bears will come down and get into garbage cans at night, and occasionally you will see one during the day, but not often. I think the peak time at Herring Cove is drawing to a close now, you'll see them more frequently there, mostly in the early morning and evening.

Hope that helps!

New Zealand
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5. Re: Salmon run in August

Thanks 'rainbirdbrain'. 10-20% chance of 1-2 bears at a distance does not sound like great odds. We are booked for Neets Bay so hopefully i can pursuade my other half to spend the nearly $800 (our money) on doing it!

6. Re: Salmon run in August

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