Salmon Lake Cabin

Salmon Lake Cabin

15' x 20' historic single story, single room structure with a gabled roof, built entirely of cedar on the shore of Salmon Lake in the Karta Wilderness. Hand hewn beams, wooden door hinges, and shake floor combine to make a uniquely attractive wilderness cabin. Surrounded by cedar trees with sandy beach in front. Good fishing: cutthroat, rainbow, Dolly Varden; pink, silver, sockeye salmon. Swimming, beach activities during warmer summer months. 5-mile (8 km) trail to Karta Bay. Hiking to McGilvery Creek and/or Anderson Creek (good fishing streams) possible, but there are no developed trails. Cabin sleeps up to 4, wood stove (wood sometimes provided), axe, maul, splitting wedges, rowboat, outhouse. Bring your own sleeping bags, sleeping pads, cooking stove, lantern, pots, pans, plates, utensils, food, toilet paper, garbage bags and fire starter. It's a good idea to bring your own water.

Fish Your National Forests: This site can be accessed by Other type of access; Fish available include: Salmon, Steelhead, Trout, Native Trout; Types of fishing available include: Shore, Motorized boat, Salt Water; 

At a Glance

Operational Hours: Check in/out at noon
Reservations: Reservations can be made by visiting
Fees: $40/night peak season May 1 – September 30
$25/night non-peak season October 1 – April 30
Usage: Light
Closest Towns: Thorne Bay, Hollis
Water: No
Restroom: Pit Toilet (1)
Operated By: Forest Service

General Information

Directions: N shore Salmon Lake, 42 air miles (68 km) NW of Ketchikan, 20 air miles (32 km) from Craig. USGS Map Craig C-2, C-3. Access by float plane or 5-mile (8 km) trail (rated "More Difficult") from salt water.

Recreation Map

Map showing recreational areas. Map Information


Cabin Rentals

Occupancy of Forest Service cabins is by permit only.

Reservation Info This site can be reserved by calling Toll Free 1-877-444-6777 (International 518-885-3639 or TDD 877-833-6777) or on-line at

Lake and Pond Fishing

Good fishing in lake, rowboat provided at cabin.
Special Designations Catch-and-release fishing is encouraged for steelhead and cutthroat as wild populations are fragile in many waters throughout the area.
Fishing Mode Boat
Fish Species Silver salmon, sockeye salmon, pink salmon, dolly Varden, steelhead trout, rainbow trout, cutthroat trout
Water Temperature Mixed cold/warm
Fishing Method Fly or lure


Backpack from Karta Bay to Salmon Lake on the Karta River Trail. This 5 mile trail offers hikers opportunities to travel from the saltwater bay to a large remote lake in the Karta River Wilderness Area. Crossing Piggyback Creek, between Karta Lake and Salmon Lake, may be difficult during high water periods.
Elevation desc 500 feet
Difficulty Level: Intermediate to Difficult

Big Game Hunting

Wildlife includes Sitka black-tailed deer, black bears and wolves. Hunting for these species in designated seasons. Review Alaska Department of Fish and Game hunting and fishing regulations.

Viewing Wildlife

View waterfowl, Sitka black-tailed deer, and black bear near the cabin, or hike down the trail to watch salmon migrate up the Karta River.
Species Waterfowl, deer, black bear, salmon
Difficulty Level: Easy to Intermediate

Boating - Non-Motorized

A skiff is provided at the cabin for fly-in users; visitors can bring in their own small outboard, or row around the lake, while fishing, hunting, or viewing wildlife.


Swim in Salmon Lake from the sandy beach in front of the Salmon Lake Cabin. Lake waters heat up more than saltwater or river waters.
Water/Flow Level Lake levels remain relatively consistent.
Difficulty Level: Intermediate to Difficult

Related Information

Recreation Areas

Recreation Activities


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