Israel Shotridge, Tlingit Carver
Deer Mountain Hatchery
A short walk to the other side of Ketchikan Creek from the Totem Heritage Center brings you to the Deer Mountain Hatchery. The hatchery uses revenues from tourism to preserve aboriginal traditions, but it is often difficult to determine when the hatchery is open to the public. Deer Mountain Hatchery raises thousands of young salmon to release into Ketchikan Creek. The Deer Mountain Hatchery also cares for injured bald eagles. A small shop displays totem carving by carvers like Israel Shotridge.
The Ketchikan weather is determined by the Pacific Ocean. July and August are the height of summer. Expect Ketchikan weather to have average summer highs of 64 F (18 C) and average lows of 52 F (11 C). June and July are the driest time of year. Rainfall is fairly constant throughout the fall and winter. October has the most rainfall, with a monthly average in excess of 22 inches (550 mm). From November to March, average highs are about 40 F (4 C) while lows are a few degrees below freezing. December is the snowiest month, with an average of over 1 foot (30 cm). June is likely the best month to visit Ketchikan.
Get to Ketchikan
The main way that tourists get to Ketchikan is on a summer Alaska cruise. No roads connect Ketchikan to the rest of Alaska. Alaska Airlines flies in to Ketchikan International Airport, so you can get to Ketchikan on a direct flight from Seattle, Washington. You can also get to Ketchikan on a small plane flight from other small communities of the Southeastern Alaska Panhandle.
Ketchikan is a port of call for the Alaska Marine Highway System (ferry system) that serves the Southeast Alaska Panhandle coastal community. The marine highway also connects to Bellingham, Washington in the south and the Aleutian Islands & Alaska Peninsula on the western end of the Gulf of Alaska.
Get Around Ketchikan by Local Bus
One of the best ways to get around Ketchikan is by local bus. The city of Ketchikan offers a free shuttle bus loop of the city from the cruise port terminal. The free local bus is a great way to get to the Totem Heritage Center and the Deer Mountain Tribal Hatchery and Eagle Center.
You can also use the transit system for an inexpensive trip to Totem Bight or to Saxman Native Village. The Silver North takes about 30 minutes to reach Totem Bight. Use the free local bus to connect to the Silver Line South to reach Saxman Native Village in about 10 minutes. Ketchikan buses are cash only and don’t give change, but they are only a few dollars. Check out the Ketchikan Gateway Borough for local bus fares and schedules.
Visit Ketchikan – Hotels