Wildlife Viewing in the Tongass National Forest

When you visit the Tongass National Forest, you're entering the home of all sorts of animals, from tiny shrews and flying squirrels to huge moose and brown bear. When you act as a good guest, you'll be rewarded with the chance to watch these creatures in their natural environment without disturbing them as they go about their daily lives.

Proper etiquette requires that you give your hosts their space. If they stop what they are doing, appear nervous, leave or approach, you're too close. Coming too close can harm the animals and can put you in danger, too. We don't have skunks here, but moose and bears can do significant damage if irked. Be particularly wary around mothers and their young. Disturbing the animals stresses them and can make it harder for them to put on the fat reserves they'll need to make it through the winter.

Bear Viewing Areas on The Tongass NF

You may have a chance encounter with a bear in your travels through the Tongass, but to give you a better chance of seeing local bruins, the Forest Service has established several areas designed specifically for bear viewing. These are places bears congregate naturally when there are fish around. Facilities have been built to make it easier and safer for people and bears to coexist, allowing the people to view the bears with minimum disturbance to them. For more information about specific bear viewing areas, check the sites below.

Anan Creek (Wrangell)
Fish Creek (Hyder)

Margaret Creek (Ketchikan)
Pack Creek (Juneau)