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Whale Pass

While in Whale Pass experience our SEAtrails. Go scuba diving, ocean kayaking or freshwater canoeing. Hike through coastal, muskeg, and rainforest forest, alpine, and sub-alpine ecosystems. Go camping and rent U.S. Forest Service cabins. Go beach camping at Exchange Cove. Visit an archaeological dig site and see ancient native fish traps and petroglyphs. Explore limestone cave systems. Enjoy world class salt and freshwater fishing, crabbing, oysters, and clamming. View abundant wildlife in the surrounding forest and waterways including eagles, whales, otters, and dolphins.


Whale Pass lies on the northeast coast of Prince of Wales Island. It is the northern most community on the Prince of Wales road system, and has a population of about 65 residents.

The area has been the site of logging camps continuously since 1964. In the early 1980s, the last camp moved out, and the area was permanently settled as the result of a State land disposal sale. The logging road was completed in 1981, and private phones were installed in 1992.

Whale Pass is located in the Tongass National Forest and is part of the Thorne Bay Ranger District. The US Forest Service Office for the Thorne Bay Ranger District is in Thorne Bay (66 miles) located at 1312 Federal Way, Sandy Beach Road. The friendly staff can help you with questions about remote destinations, recreation facilities, remote cabins, subsistence, job opportunities and technical assistance on resource management activities.


Prince of Wales Island is accessible via the Inter-Island Ferry Authority (IFA)’s daily service from Ketchikan. Travelers on Alaska’s Marine Highway System (AMHS) simply need to transfer at the docks in Ketchikan and purchase a separate ticket. The IFA ferry takes passengers to the Island community of Hollis, which is 89 miles from Whale Pass on the Prince of Wales Island road system. Visitors can bring their own vehicles to Prince of Wales on the ferry, or there are car rental services on the Island. Contact the Prince of Wales Chamber of Commerce (POWCC) for more information.

Currently there is no public transportation system on Prince of Wales, but a private shuttle company meets each ferry and offers transportation to the City of Craig. If you do not have your own transportation, arrangements SHOULD BE MADE AHEAD OF TIME!

Alaska Airlines services the community of Ketchikan and from there it is possible to connect with a small air carrier to Prince of Wales. There are several air carriers that offer services to the island communities. Each community has regular air service, but some communities only have once a week service. The following air taxi companies offer regular or charter float plane service to Thorne Bay:

Additionally LAB Air offers wheeled plane service to the airstrip in Klawock from the Ketchikan Airport.


Whale Pass has limited services. Lodging options are sufficient through several of the lodges and cabins. There is also a general store, a place to buy groceries, a mail room, and public telephone. The nearest medical clinic is in Craig and auxiliary healthcare is available through the local EMS. Car rentals can be made from Craig.


The area is dominated by a cool maritime climate. Summer temperatures can range from 46 to 70F; winter temperatures range from 15 to 42F.

Local Contacts

For information about Whale Pass, contact the Prince of Wales Chamber of Commerce at PO Box 490, Klawock, AK 99925-0490, or 907-755-2626.

A Guide to Prince of Wales Island providing information about all 11 communities on Prince of Wales Island, basic road map, services, trail info, business directory, lodging & charter charts, harbor information is available by emailing . The community of Whale Pass is unincorporated so there are no city or borough officials.


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