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“Early morning kayaking was fantastic” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Packer Expeditions

Packer Expeditions
P.O. Box 601, Skagway, AK 99840
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Ranked #3 of 49 Activities in Skagway
Type: Tours, Adventure
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Attraction details
Owner description: Packer Expeditions offers day hikes on wilderness trails not accessible by road, a sea kayak trip on a lake in British Columbia combined with a scenic ride on the White Pass and Yukon Route Railway, and guided and catered backpacking on the world famous Chilkoot Trail.
Useful Information: Activities for older children
Qualicum Beach, Canada
4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
“Early morning kayaking was fantastic”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 7, 2014

My wife and I were in Skagway on a Holland America cruise. We met Shane (is awesome) at the cruise ship terminal and took a coach up to the lake. There we met Kurt, Michael and another guide. Water was smooth as glass, temperature was great and the guides were fantastic. My wife is afraid of the water and seldom uses the kayak I bought her a few years ago. After this, I've convinced her we should buy a double-kayak. The guides were informative, entertaining and relaxed. We highly recommend this and will sign up for it again if we are up that way. Also got a great recommendation from Shane (is awesome) for the Skagway Brewing Company.

Visited July 2014
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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272 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Date | Rating
  • English first
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English first
Tampa, Florida
13 reviews 13 reviews
7 attraction reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
“Outstanding Time Hiking”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 2, 2014

We recently had a wonderful experience hiking in Skagway with the people from Packer Expeditions. We booked our excursion through Carnival , the White Pass Rail and Glacier Station Exploration hike. Although listed as a moderate hike my wife and I had some concerns as we are not experienced hikers , especially in the mountains. In short , the guides from Pacler , especially Kellen and Nita , were fantastic. They helped hikers of all types throughout the day. Nita led our group and she was fantastic working with all of us to set a comfortable pace and making sure everyone in our little group of eight was comfortable with what were doing. All the guides were very informative about the area and made it very enjoyable. They made sure everyone had a great time. One thing everyone enjoyed was how much the guides love their jobs and that translated to everyone having a good time. Have a great time using Packer !!!!!

Visited June 2014
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Canton, Georgia
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 attraction reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
“The Best Excursion of our Alaska Trip”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 30, 2014

We took a Disney Cruise and booked the Kayaking and White Pass tour through Disney. We were extremely pleased to have taken this excursion. It surpassed our expectations. Kellen, Shane, Michael and Dylan were extremely helpful and very informative about the area. We had a spectacularly beautiful clear day which enhanced the experience. We are in our sixties but had no problem paddling the kayak. We paddled for a little over an hour and were tired but exhilarated by the scenery and trip. We then boarded the White Pass train back to Skagway. We were in the end car and were able to stand on the back of the car to take pictures and enjoy the view. We saw bear and eagle on the trip. I was able to get some of the best pictures of our trip on this excursion. We want to go back and do more kayaking and some hiking around Skagway and would definitely contact Packer Expeditions to schedule another excursion.

Visited June 2014
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Amesbury, Massachusetts
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
“Sawtooth Mountain Hike - Great day with Kids in Skagway”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 30, 2014

My kids loved this hike and our guides so much that my 9-year old son said "when I finish college I want to move to Skagway and be a hiking guide!". We went out with Andy, Kellen, and John from Packer Expeditions. I have been on many guided tours - hikes, kayaking, rafting, etc. This group is by far the most professional, well organized, and well-trained group I have ever encountered. My wife and I were looking for a day hike with our two kids (aged 9 and 7) out of Skagway, where we were arriving on a cruise ship. This excursion was offered on the cruise, but I called Wade Gruhl directly and spoke to him about whether it was appropriate for kids. Andy in particular was super with the kids, but all the guides were great. They were so knowledgeable about the flora and fauna, and took the time to point out not only specific plants of interest, but they pointed out really interesting characteristics of the forest, the impact of avalanches, wind, and clear-cutting done a century ago by the early settlers. It was really interesting and these guys were so enthusiastic about the wilderness that it was infectious. Start to finish it took 4 1/2 hours, including a 30 minute train ride up and back from the trail head.

Visited June 2014
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Atlanta, Georgia
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
5 attraction reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
“White Pass Rail and Laughton Glacier Hike”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 29, 2014

My wife and I did this hike last week. Subject to the caveats below, I found this excursion to be the most memorable and enjoyable of our week-long Alaskan cruise. While some people fly over or see glaciers from a few miles away by boat, this excursion literally puts you on top of one. After a short 45 minute train ride (which is through some spectacular scenery), you arrive at your hike site. There is about an hour hike through a rainforest (yes, Alaska has one of only three non-subtropical rain forests in the world) until you get close to the glacier. This portion of the hike provides you with incredible views of the mountains, glacier run-off "rivers" and surrounding scenery (including some waterfalls that run from the top of the neighboring mountain to the bottom). This path is well maintained by the forest service, and thus is relatively easy to do. However, there are a lot of steps and on the way up there is cumulatively a decent amount of incline. The incline is not steep at any one part, so there is nothing that creates any fear. Rather, the hike gently slopes upward. But, the collective amount of the upward portion may make someone who is not in good shape tired. I dont say this to scare off anyone who is not in great shape - I think you can do the hike without being in great shape, but be prepared to do a little work.

After stopping for a short snack break, we then continued up to the toe of the glacier. This part of the hike was an incredible experience. We literally climbed up the toe of the glacier. It was an awesome site to see (and feel) the glacier, and experience the grandness of this mountain of ice. Few people get to experience a glacier this way. You see (from a safe distance) giant holes in the hole, and how the glaciers were formed and are melting. As before, no one part of this portion of the hike is very steep. So, again, even people with a fear of heights should have no problem whatsoever. However, be advised that it is very rocky, so wear appropriate shoes to ensure you dont twist your ankle.

As for the guides, they were wonderful. They were nice, educated, and made sure that each hiker was comfortable with the pace and progress of the hike. If anyone wanted to stop for any reason, they were willing to have one of the guides stop with the hiker (in fact, at one point, my wife decided to stop mid-way up the toe of the glacier and one of the guides stopped and sat with her while others hiked further up). The guides carried extra clothes in case anyone was cold, and also carried extra food and water.

In short, while this hike is long (about 6 hours hiking) it was 100% worth the time and effort. I got to see and experience parts of Alaska that you just can't experience any other way (seeing it from miles away by sea plane or boat just isnt the same as sitting down and having lunch on the glacier). I highly recommend this excursion, but be prepared for a lot of walking and some work. It's worth every step.

Visited June 2014
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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