The Spirit of Totem Bight -- Ketchikan and Totem Bight State Park -- a Private Tour

Tour Number

Activity Level



Shore Excursion, Museums / Culture, Local Experience, City


Kid Friendly: Yes.

Friendly: Yes.
Must be able to climb into and out of an SUV (with help and a step). There is a 1/4 mile gravel path into and out of Totem Bight. It has a small incline, but with some huffing and puffing, we can manage.

Maximum travelers: 5



French (basic), English (fluent)

Tlinget, Haida, and Tsimsian art, carving, symbols, myths and stories, with an Expert Local Guide

There is an ancient tradition of totem pole carving in Southeast Alaska. The tradition still lives and thrives. There are a number of poles in town. Totem Bight, a state park north of town, has a number of beautiful poles, and a reproduction of a traditional clan house, which we can enter. You can soak up the atmosphere of the clan house, while I tell you ancient stories.

I will show the poles to you, and explain how they are carved. I am an amateur carver myself, and can show you my self-forged tools. I know, and am familiar with the work of many of the best modern carvers. Some, I can recognize from the distinctive adzing, the cut-marks of their tools. I have been a story-teller all my life, and I will delight in telling you some of the stories that lie behind the figures in the wood.

Totem Bight also contains pretty walks through the Tongass Forest, nice examples of some of the local flora, and magnificent examples of SE Alaska trees.


⦁ First, downtown Ketchikan. Totem poles, historic Creek Street, and salmon falls
⦁ (optional) - Ketchikan Museum - a small exquisite display of native art
⦁ (optional) - Totem Heritage Center - some really old poles
⦁ A drive through Northern Ketchikan, and Ward Cove
⦁ Totem Bight State Park -- Forest Walk, Totem Poles, and Clan House

On this tour we will visit both downtown and Totem Bight Park. Within a 3. 5 hour tour, we should have time for at least one of the optional destinations. We might adjust this itinerary for rain. Whatever we do, we shall commit to have fun.

Meeting Location + Tour Duration

Meeting location: I will meet you at the exit ramp of the ship. I will have a sign with your name, or I will be wearing distinctive clothes (I often wear a kilt).

End location: I will take you back to the ship, or, if you prefer, leave you at a good shopping or eating area near the ship.

Duration: 3 hours 30 min.

Totem Bight is a wee bit of a Drive to the North of Ketchikan. The advantage is you will get to see some of the country and forest. But the drive takes time. I am happy to stretch this tour to 4 hours if you like, and have more time to examine poles. Or We could hurry and get it done in 3 hours, but we would have to give up some of the optional stops.


2003 Dodge Durango R/T. Leather seats, Air-conditioned &individual climate control. Tinted windows. Seats 5 in comfort.

PLEASE NOTE: In the second row center ia a skinny wee jump-seat (with seat belt), so we could take 6 people if two are skinny, and willing to sit close together.

Room in back for bags and stuff, or even a wheelchair -- if the person in the wheelchair can get into and out of an SUV seat.

I can arrange for a larger vehicle, but that will significantly increase the price of the tour.

What’s Included

Transportation. All access fees and local fees. Bottled water.

What’s Extra

Nothing, unless you want to get a snack along the way.


I speak some French (Quebecois),
and Scottish Gaelic.
Driving tours max of 5 or 6 travelers (although I can charter larger vehicles for custom tours).
Walking tours max of 25 people, or even more - contact me for walking tours with more than 10.

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