Juneau is surrounded by natural beauty, and a trip to Tracy Arm is a must. The fjord was named for Secretary of the Navy Benjamin Franklin Tracy and is just 45 miles south of downtown. Also close to Petersburg and the Holkham Bay, it’s the perfect excuse for a road trip. Discover the nearby Tongass National Forest and Stephens Passage while en route to the center of the Tracy Arm-Fords Terror Wilderness.

Home to over 653,000 acres with a total of two fjords (one over 30 miles long), 20 percent of the area is perpetually covered in ice. It’s only during summer months that you’ll see floating ice, some as small as your fist and others as big as mansions. Both fjords are considered active.

Getting Closer

It’s easiest to access the fjords via Stephens Passage and the Holkham Bay, Tracy, or Endicott arms. Float planes can also make the journey easier, with flights departing from Juneau. Some visitors prefer vessel tours and small commercial cruise boats. Close by you’ll also find Sawyer Glacier, tucked into the tail end of Tracy Arm.

Wildlife is abundant here, and it’s common to spot wolves, seals, bears, deer, and a number of penguins. Even mountain goats wander to the base of the glaciers. For first time visitors, it’s often best to take a formal tour with a local expert skilled at navigating the area.