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SE Alaska Trip/Cabins

Unread postby Bill Rusk » Sun Nov 22, 2015 10:24 am

KlausNW (and others)

Posting here rather than a PM as I figure others might like to learn as well.

I hope to spend a fair amount of time next summer in the SE of Alaska. Flying, exploring, sightseeing, fishing (but that is secondary to the trip) and staying in the Forest Service Cabins in the SE part of Alaska (Ketchikan, Sitka, Juneau, Skagway, Etc).

Here is a link to the cabins put together by Tom Bass.....http://www.publiclakecabinsak.com/

Do you have any suggestions as to hidden gems, scenic lakes I need to land on just to see the waterfall, out of the way places to go to, etc? Favorite cabins? I am more interested in the scenery than the fishing...ie I don't want to go to the worst cabin on the ugliest lake just because the fishing is good. Prefer the most scenic cabin, lake, and if I catch a fish, great, added bonus. I do intend to fish but it is not the primary reason for the trip.

I will be in a Supercub on amphibs. In general, right now, I am planning to try to stay out of salt water. With the amphibs I can get fuel on land, and then go play in the mountain, fresh water lakes. The tentative plan is to attend the Alaska Trade show May 1st then immediately head South into the SE. Play until May 18th or so, find a place to leave the airplane, preferably in a hangar, then come back for a couple more weeks the first part of June.

Thoughts, suggestions??

Link to my thread about my Cub on this site here....viewtopic.php?f=9&t=2549

Thank you for your insights.

Bill

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Re: SE Alaska Trip/Cabins

Unread postby KlausNW » Mon Nov 23, 2015 1:32 am

Bill Rusk wrote:KlausNW (and others)
Do you have any suggestions as to hidden gems, scenic lakes I need to land on just to see the waterfall, out of the way places to go to, etc? Favorite cabins? I am more interested in the scenery than the fishing...ie I don't want to go to the worst cabin on the ugliest lake just because the fishing is good. Prefer the most scenic cabin, lake, and if I catch a fish, great, added bonus. I do intend to fish but it is not the primary reason for the trip.


First, thanks for sharing this question over the forum. The folks in Southeast, AK are very proud of the natural beauty in every direction you look. (when it's not too foggy). When you get done with this trip it will justify all the time and expense building your Cub.

Good news, the best cabins are on lake sides. The cabins that are salt water access don't have docks and the average tide is over 15 feet each 6 hours. A couple times we've anchored the plane out over night and didn't get a wink of sleep, that was straight floats. The 'hidden gem cabin?' that's a very tough question, I'll think about it. It's soooo hard to find a cabin without a view and/or attraction. There may be one I just can't think of it right now.

That goes the same with the fishing, Like you, to me the fishing is one of the past times while out in the wilderness. If you find a cabin that doesn't offer the best Alaska has to offer write a magazine article about it. There is no bad fishing spot or if there is the magazines will all publish your story.

Hangar space in Southeast is a little challenge. Ask around the small towns like Sitka, Petersburg, Wrangle and Ketchikan but the most hangars hands down are in Juneau. I have a couple Super Cub friends in Juneau that can accommodate a padre. The going rate for hangar space in Juneau is between $300 and $400/month. Many of the owners have their planes in the water between May and September leaving a hole in their hangar.

Ask more specific questions in this thread. The information we share will be greatly appreciated by a lot of lurkers. Maybe one or two will chime in and ask one themselves.

:fishing:

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Re: SE Alaska Trip/Cabins

Unread postby Bill Rusk » Tue Nov 24, 2015 10:35 am

Klaus - Thank you.

First stop on the way down from Anchorage will probably be Yakutat. The only viable cabin there seems to be the Situk cabin on Situk lake. Link here

http://www.publiclakecabinsak.com/09-ka ... lake-cabin

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Situk Lake cabin view

Then down into the Juneau area. Five cabins in that area. Eagle Glacier, Peterson, Turner East and Turner West, Windfall. I guess the crown jewel of all the cabins is Turner West so I will try to get a reservation there. Understand they go FAST. Turner Lake West Cabin link.......

http://www.publiclakecabinsak.com/08-ju ... cabin-west

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View from Turner Lake West Cabin.

If I can't get that one, Turner East seems to offer the same spectacular scenery.

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Turner lake East


The other three are all on the trail system and hikers are allowed to stop in. Not sure I want folks coming through when I'm out fishing. Is that really a problem? Or am I over reacting? Link to Windfall which would be my choice of those three left.....http://www.publiclakecabinsak.com/08-ju ... lake-cabin


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Windfall Cabin


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Windfall again


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Windfall











Ok.... so thoughts on this? Thank you
Posting Pictures to show other folks why they need to put this on their Bucket List. Most beautiful place/area in the world!!



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Re: SE Alaska Trip/Cabins

Unread postby cubdriver2 » Tue Nov 24, 2015 1:34 pm

I can't look at them anymore, it's like lookin at the neighbors cute wife Bill

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Re: SE Alaska Trip/Cabins

Unread postby jjbaker » Tue Nov 24, 2015 2:05 pm

What happened? Why are these pictures so blurry?
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Re: SE Alaska Trip/Cabins

Unread postby KlausNW » Tue Nov 24, 2015 3:10 pm

The other three are all on the trail system and hikers are allowed to stop in. Not sure I want folks coming through when I'm out fishing. Is that really a problem? Or am I over reacting? Link to Windfall which would be my choice of those three left


Very much a problem if you don't want visitors. I'm guilty of being one of those hikers who visit unexpectedly. Most of the folks who rent those cabins need to figure on a little company from time to time.

Turner Lake cabins are nice. The further out away from Juneau and Sitka the cabins are the more expensive they are for the average visitor. For example: A Beaver charter cost about $650 an hour, If the cabin is a 100 miles/1 hour from town the price to get dropped off is $1300.00 and the price to get picked up a week later is another $1300. $2600 plus a couple hundred for the cabin rental and little extras will cost every bit of $3000 for just a week trip to the woods. Of coarse if you have your own plane then the distance is not as much of a factor. Other words, look at the cabins further out from town and you'll have more privacy and more scheduling availability.
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Re: SE Alaska Trip/Cabins

Unread postby KlausNW » Tue Nov 24, 2015 7:32 pm

A typical government produced film but it gets a couple points across.... and it has Floatplanes in it :D



https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vm_Jy3zzI5g
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Re: SE Alaska Trip/Cabins

Unread postby Bill Rusk » Tue Nov 24, 2015 8:29 pm

Klaus

Thanks for the point regarding distance from a major city, cost, and utilization. I had not considered that. Thanks too for the video. We will need a hotel in Ketchikan Saturday May 7th. Due to the Cruise line season I figure I need to think about reservations soon. Recommendations? Better to reserve now and cancel if necessary than to find all rooms booked.
So....... if I do Turner Lake Thursday the 5th, I will need to select a cabin the 6th and 7th.

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This is Salmon Lake Thorne Bay I like the beach and cabin right on the water

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View looks pretty good to me

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McDonald Lake Cabin.

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It sits on the island where the little bridge is.

This is what I'm thinking. There are so many great cabins it is hard to choose just a few. Also, it goes without saying, it is all weather dependent.

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Re: SE Alaska Trip/Cabins

Unread postby Bill Rusk » Tue Dec 01, 2015 10:49 pm

OK folks - These are the cabins I have reserved so far..........



This is the Situk cabin up near Yakutat. We will stay here first as it is on the way down from Anchorage. Not a bad cabin, but it is not in the mountains, so has less scenery to offer.
http://www.publiclakecabinsak.com/09-ka ... lake-cabin

This is the crown jewel of the AK cabins, Turner Lake West, great location and neat fireplace.
http://www.publiclakecabinsak.com/08-ju ... cabin-west


This cabin is further south, and will be our third to stay in.
http://www.publiclakecabinsak.com/03-pr ... thorne-bay

The next night will be in a hotel in Ketchikan so Jay can get a shower and catch a flight back home. After he departs on Sunday morning I will go to this place
http://www.publiclakecabinsak.com/02-ke ... lake-cabin

Then the next one will be here
http://www.publiclakecabinsak.com/02-ke ... lake-cabin

Still looking for a Ketchikan hotel recommendation. Bueller.....Bueller......Anyone......?

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Re: SE Alaska Trip/Cabins

Unread postby KlausNW » Wed Dec 02, 2015 12:05 am

I just checked the Sunset-Sunrise calendar. May 1st in Ketchikan will basically be 5am til 8:30pm. Just remember to be patient and wait til the last minute to takeoff and get to your next destination. Many times the weather will be down for what seems like the whole day. Check the sunset time and the time to destination, usually the weather breaks before the day light ends. Write down the no-go time.

I've given up on the weather a couple times around 6pm and regretted it. Hopefully you won't have to worry about the weather..... good luck, wish I was with you...
:rain: :rain: :rain: :rain:
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Re: SE Alaska Trip/Cabins

Unread postby cubdriver2 » Wed Dec 02, 2015 12:07 am

Wow

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Re: SE Alaska Trip/Cabins

Unread postby Bill Rusk » Wed Dec 02, 2015 9:06 am

Thank you Klaus. Excellent point.

Weather will be a big player. If I'm lucky and get some nice days, it is the most beautiful place in the world. Just amazing and stunning. But I could also spend a whole week unable to see much at all. I also acknowledge that the local pilots familiar with the area may be flying when I'm not able to do so. They can, and do, fly safely in low vis. I will have to set my personal mins higher.
If I can pull this whole thing off it should be the trip of a lifetime.

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Re: SE Alaska Trip/Cabins

Unread postby Bill Rusk » Sat Dec 05, 2015 12:19 pm

I found a video on youtube that has the Turner Lake West Cabin in it. I pulled just the 90 seconds that relate to the cabin. The odd twist is that many years ago I chartered that exact same Beaver for a family sightseeing flight. Small world sometimes. Pretty place. I cut out the end where the tail of the Beaver knocks the guy in the water.



Just wanted you to see what you are missing by not going to SE Alaska.

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Re: SE Alaska Trip/Cabins

Unread postby KlausNW » Sat Dec 05, 2015 3:20 pm

N62357, she's been around for a long time. Around 30,000 hours...

Got to love that N-number "357"

http://www.dhc-2.com/id790.htm
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Re: SE Alaska Trip/Cabins

Unread postby Bill Rusk » Sun Dec 20, 2015 11:19 am

Found this clip on youtube........this is the quintessential definition of the glassy water landing.......at about 42 seconds you can hear the power come in as he sets his attitude, then later you will see that it is not a smooth touchdown. Well done.



And here is a link to the cabin on Tom Bass's site.....


http://www.publiclakecabinsak.com/06-si ... -eva-cabin


Fun stuff

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Re: SE Alaska Trip/Cabins

Unread postby Bill Rusk » Sat Dec 26, 2015 5:34 pm

Going to spend the day tomorrow with a mechanic from Wip and get some maint training. Thinks to look out for, common issues, how to adjust, etc. Looking forward to it. Going to go through the floats pretty thoroughly in the next month or two to make sure they are in top shape for the trip.

Also made a reservation at this hotel in Ketchikan. http://www.thenewyorkhotel.com/index.html

They have several small facilities. I will be in a "Creekside" room. This is right in the heart of the touristy, quaint, part of Ketchikan so it should be good for a one time good deal.

I have also flight planned the route up to AK. I will be following the Alcan Hwy this time. I have done the Trench before but, the time of year, expected wx, and also the need to insure a timely arrival in Anchorage, dictate the need to take the safest, though least scenic route. Expecting customs at Lethbridge.

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Re: SE Alaska Trip/Cabins

Unread postby Stevesbrother » Mon Jan 04, 2016 8:08 pm

Thanks for posting ......someday I Hope. Enjoy and let us know all about it
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Re: SE Alaska Trip/Cabins

Unread postby WardAir » Wed Jan 13, 2016 4:43 am

I've been to just about every cabin near Juneau and they all have their own unique qualities. West turner is not a bad bet and it is the better of the 2 cabins on turner in my opinion. This lake is great because it is close to juneau maybe 20 mins in your cub from juneau. There is an faa Webcam at Annex creek that looks directly into it from the taku river. Besides the faa site http://webcams.thesnowcloud.com/ and http://www.aelp.com/ld/ have some webcams that look along the route to the lake. Bring bug dope and maybe a small outboard if you can so you can tool around the lake. You'll enjoy the rickety dock sometimes it comes off from ramp. Having trouble posting pictures sorry for lack of visual content.

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Re: SE Alaska Trip/Cabins

Unread postby WardAir » Wed Jan 13, 2016 4:47 am

KlausNW wrote:N62357, she's been around for a long time. Around 30,000 hours...

Got to love that N-number "357"

http://www.dhc-2.com/id790.htm




That plane snorts on straight floats.
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Re: SE Alaska Trip/Cabins

Unread postby WardAir » Wed Jan 13, 2016 4:51 am

Bill Rusk wrote:I found a video on youtube that has the Turner Lake West Cabin in it. I pulled just the 90 seconds that relate to the cabin. The odd twist is that many years ago I chartered that exact same Beaver for a family sightseeing flight. Small world sometimes. Pretty place. I cut out the end where the tail of the Beaver knocks the guy in

Just wanted you to see what you are missing by not going to SE Alaska.

Bill


I remember that day the pilot is Nathan from Arkansas with his sister and brother in law who was trying to be helpful before forgetting about that darned tail!
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Re: SE Alaska Trip/Cabins

Unread postby Bill Rusk » Wed Jan 13, 2016 1:02 pm

Dez

Thanks for posting your opinions and also the web cam links. Great stuff. Thanks too for the links to "357"

The Cruise and charter of Beaver 357, was really the genesis of this whole trip. After I returned from that Alaska trip in 97 (or 98) I built a model of that Beaver. I was/am more of a flying model builder than a plastic builder so it is not great, but it hangs in my current hangar almost 20 years later as a reminder of that day and awesome flight. Note the tail number. I don't remember the name of the pilot but I'll try to scan in a picture in the next day or two. Although I was already in love with the SE from reading about it, that trip cemented a desire to return in my own floatplane and spend as much time as necessary to get my fill, perhaps the rest of my life, in the SE Alaska.

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Re: SE Alaska Trip/Cabins

Unread postby WardAir » Wed Jan 13, 2016 6:36 pm

Too cool Bill great Model but you should clean up those water rudders! ... I'm jealous of your trip, you get time to enjoy it actually, when it's your job you don't always get the time to take it all in.
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Re: SE Alaska Trip/Cabins

Unread postby Bill Rusk » Thu Jan 14, 2016 8:10 am

Dez

Yea, the water rudders are pretty bad but I'm not going to give you a case of beer for catching me with them down - LOL


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This is at the Juneau floatplane dock. I'm under the wing on the left, a friend and his wife, that were with us, in the middle and far right.


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Our pilot is on the left, Dave - in the middle, and my son - on the right. So.......Dez or Karl do you know who the pilot is? It has been a long time and I've forgotten his name. He did a great job. Smooth, friendly, and considerate.

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Re: SE Alaska Trip/Cabins

Unread postby WardAir » Thu Jan 14, 2016 12:11 pm

Charles "buddy" Ferguson great guy
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Re: SE Alaska Trip/Cabins

Unread postby KlausNW » Thu Jan 14, 2016 3:22 pm

I can't believe you caught Buddy laughing... :lol:

Buddy likes taking photos while out and about. Here's his website:
http://www.buddyferguson.com/
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