Frequently Asked Questions


What is the difference between Pack Creek and Waterfall Creek bear viewing?

Pack Creek is a designated Brown Bear Sanctuary in the middle of Admiralty Island.
Pack Creek is operated May-September with limited availability.   Pack Creek is overseen by the USFS and ADF&G with permitting policies that limit the number of guests to very small groups in order to have minimal impact on the Bears in the area.  Waterfall Creek is a site that has been utilized and managed by BCO for more than 20 years! Waterfall Creek is operated late June-September when the Bears are actively fishing for Salmon.

Are your trips open to cruise ship passengers?

Yes!  Cruise passengers make up a large portion of our customer base, and many come back year after year.  Our trip lengths and customizable scheduling allow us to work with a wide variety of ship schedules.  We also provide dock to dock transportation, and all the gear you’ll need for your trip.

What Equipment is provided for Bear Viewing trips?

We provide our guests rain gear, rubber boots, and waders when necessary to keep you dry when loading and unloading from the floatplane.  We also provide binoculars and spotting scopes with phone mounts so our guests can take in all the views that the excursion offers.  Waterproof tote bags are available for use as well as a light snack and water.

What equipment is provided for fly-fishing trips?

BCO provides everything you’ll need to make you fishing trip a success!  Rods and Reels from brands like Echo, Sage, and Ross.  Waders in sizes youth 3 to men’s 15, rain jackets when needed, along with a snack and refreshments.  All of your flies and tippet material will be provided courtesy of your guide.

What to bring?

We recommend for all of our excursions that guests dress in layers so that you can add or take off layers to match the variable weather that Alaska has to offer.  We also recommend a hat, sunglasses, and sunscreen when necessary.

Should I tip my guide?

All of our guides strive to provide the best possible experience for our guests.  Our guides are true professionals and will appreciate any gratuity that they are given if you feel their services have warranted it.  Typical gratuities range from 10%-20%.

What if I’m an beginner angler?

First timers are welcome!  A fly out fly fishing trip is high on many of our guest’s bucket lists.  Our guests come with all levels of fly fishing abilities from beginner anglers to seasoned pros.  All of our guides are highly skilled at fly casting instruction and will make sure that everyone receives a casting lesson with pro tips throughout the day to ensure you have the trip of a lifetime!

What fitness level is needed for your trips?

Our trips typically require a moderate level of fitness, and mobility.  Guests should be able to safely walk up to 1 mile over terrain that may consist of uneven, or slipperty ground.  Full day fly fishing guests may walk further distances (typically 1-3 miles) during their trip.

What type aircraft do you operate?

We have several aircraft to fit the needs of each excursion.  We operate DeHaviland Beavers and Otters, as well as Cessna 180, 185, and 206.

Will we see wildlife?

You won’t be alone in the waters was while on your BCO excursion.  Along with the salmon, a wide variety of marine mammals such as Seals, Otters, Whales, and Porpoises are frequently seen from shore.  On land Brown Bears, Black Bears, Sitka Black-Tailed Deer, Eagles, and an abundance of waterfowl are around throughout the season.

Is transportation provided?

Transportation to our shop at the Juneau International Airport is proved from anywhere in Juneau – including for customers arriving on a cruise ship.

Do you serve alcohol?

BCO does not hold an Alaska liquor license and do not provide alcohol for our excursions.  If you would like to enjoy a cold one while on your fishing trip guests are welcome to provide your own.

Booking Policies & Cancellations

In order to secure your booking and trip date(s), we require full payment for your trip.  We will always work with you to attempt to reschedule should you need to make changes to your itinerary.  We highly recommend purchasing trip insurance to protect your trip investment.

If you need to cancel your trip for any reason, the following is our cancellation refund policy:

Cancellations made 60 days or more prior to your trip date: 100% refund of your trip cost, less a $75/person, non-refundable permit fee.

Cancellations made 30-59 days prior to your trip date: 50% refund of your trip cost.

Cancellations made less than 30 days prior to your trip date, including “no-shows” on the day of your trip, are non-refundable.

If Bear Creek Outfitters cancels your trip for any reason, including as noted in our passenger weight surcharge policy, you will receive a 100% refund of your trip cost, less a $75/person, non-refundable permit fee.

Passenger Weight Surcharge Policy 

We operate our trips using small aircraft that have restrictions on weight and balance for safety.  Therefore, any passenger weighing more than 250lbs (113kg) will be charged an additional $300 to help ensure adequate aircraft space.  Actual passenger weights are verified for each guest prior to departure.  If you or a member(s) of your party exceed 250lbs, please let us know at the time of booking, or as far in advance of your trip date as possible.  In the uncommon scenario that a guest does not provide prior notice of exceeding 250lbs, and additional aircraft space is not available, we reserve the right to cancel your trip.