Liquid Alaska Tours is an adventure travel company headquartered in Juneau, Alaska. We are dedicated to providing high-end Alaskan experiences that showcase our unique landscape, culture, and untamed spirit. Founded in 2009, our dream became our mission: To provide visitors of the Last Frontier with unforgettable and unparalleled vacation experiences.
What we'll do
Explore The Mendenhall Glacier Today!
The Mendenhall Glacier is a 13-mile-long river of flowing ice. It is 1,800 ft. deep and a half-mile wide and even though it is the most-visited glacier in Alaska, most people only see it from afar. Our extended Alaska glacier tour gives you ample time to get the best pictures, get your full of glacier water, and do a little dance on the glacier ice itself. Be one of the few to experience the beauty of the Mendenhall Glacier, exclusively and safely.
Your exploration begins at the cruise ship docks in downtown Juneau, where you’re greeted by our professional guides to officially start your adventure. They sweep your small group away on a narrated ride deep into the Tongass National Forest, the largest National Forest in the United States, which is where the Mendenhall Glacier resides. We go directly to the West Glacier parking area where your equipment and safety gear awaits you. After getting suited up, your guides teach you how to paddle safely and efficiently across Mendenhall Lake.
The journey is just as important as the destination, and that’s why we access the glacier via a canoe ride. Anyone in a kayak would be jealous, as we cruise speedily across the lake. As we paddle, you get the chance to experience the serenity of the Alaskan wilderness. Surrounded by steep cliffs, the thundering Nugget Falls, icebergs, and native wildlife; this voyage to the glacier is unforgettable.
Once arriving on the rocky shore next to the glacier, follow your guides on a short hike on glacier moraine to the glacier ice. Strap on your crampons and be one of the few to walk on the Mendenhall Glacier. Our professional guides are on the ice every day and thrive on showing off what glacier features the Mendenhall Glacier has to offer.
One of the most unique aspects of our trip is that the glacial environment is in a constant state of movement and change, meaning no one tour is the same as the next. The glacier periodically forms blue ice pools, moulins, and other incredible features as it moves and melts. Our expert guides will determine if any such ice features are safe to explore on the day of the tour, and may add them to the trip as a bonus.
The Mendenhall Glacier is one of the most visited glaciers in North America and the National Forest Service limits the number of permits allowed on the glacier each year. Be one of the few to actually experience the beauty of the Mendenhall Glacier!
What to expect / what's provided
*Duration: 5.5 hours
*Included: Full Waterproof Gear, Healthy Snacks and Water Bottles, Round-trip transportation
*Liquid Alaska’s group sizes are small and personal, we provide a 1:7 guide to guest ratio for your enjoyment and safety
*All of our guides are Wilderness First Responders
*No canoe experience necessary
*This is an all-inclusive tour, we provide everything you need to be safe and dry, including round-trip transportation, professional guides, rain jacket, rain pants, Alaskan Sneakers aka Xtratuf rain boots, paddling and glacier gear like life jackets and paddling gloves, crampons (traction spikes), helmet, trekking pole and a dry bag
*US Forest Service Permits
*Bottled water, snacks, and hot beverage
*Please remember to dress for the weather. We suggest wearing comfortable, non-cotton layers. If it is cooler, please bring a hat, gloves, and wear warm socks. If there is sun, please bring sunglasses
*No specific glacier ice features can be guaranteed or predicted, including Mendenhall ice caves, bright blue ice pools, or ridge-line overlooks.
- Minimum age: 12 years old
- Minimum weight: 90 lbs.
- Maximum weight: 240 lbs.
- Not recommended for guests with back or hip problems
- Pregnant guests will not be allowed on this tour
- Full use of limbs for up to 2 hours canoe paddling and 1.5 hours of glacier hiking
- Ability to hike over steep uneven terrain for approximately 1 mile
- Signed liability waiver
*Tour Itinerary: Tour Times Below Are Approximate
- 30 minutes transport to the glacier launch site
- 30 minutes equipment and safety briefing
- 1 hour lake canoe paddle
- 1to 1.5 hours glacier hike and ice exploration
- 1 to hour lake canoe paddle
- 30 minutes gear unload and snack break
- 30 minutes transport to cruise ship terminal
*Price includes all local taxes
- If I am traveling by myself, may I participate in a Liquid Tour?
Of course! We welcome solo adventure travelers!
- What if our ship is delayed or our port is canceled?
Alaska Cruise Ships tend to run on time, but there are always exceptions. If your cruise ship is late, we will do our best to accommodate. We understand this is completely out of your control as well as ours and if we are unable to accommodate, we will provide a full refund. If your cruise ship has to cancel Juneau as a port of call, we will also provide a full refund.
- Are we guaranteed to get back to the ship in time?
We guarantee that your tour will return on time. All tour times are scheduled around cruise ship arrival and departure times and allow for adequate time before and after the adventure to easily make it back on board and on time.
- Will our tour be canceled if it is raining?
No. Juneau is located in the world's largest temperate rainforest (the Tongass National Forest, it is also the largest National Forest in the United States). Rain is very common in Juneau and we welcome it. We provide a rain jacket, rain pants, and rain boots to each guest, but please dress to stay warm and possibly get wet. If Liquid Alaska Tours deems weather conditions are unsafe, Liquid Alaska Tours will cancel the tour (and provide a full refund).
- Tour departures 30 minutes or greater after your ship arrival, you will be able to make it to our tour meeting location at the Mount Roberts Tramway on time. Most of the cruise ships docks in Juneau are within a 5-7 minute walk from the Mount Roberts Tramway with the exception of the AJ dock.
The AJ dock is about a mile away from Mount Roberts Tramway. There is a shuttle system (For most cruise lines and a fee may apply) that will drive you and drop you off next to our meeting location at Mount Roberts Tramway.
- Will I be able to see or go into an ice cave on tour?
Possibly, but we do not guarantee it. Ice caves are not a permanent feature and completely unpredictable. Our professional guides are on the ice every day looking for features that are safe and accessible, but glaciers are at a constant state of change, so specific features, including ice caves are not guaranteed. If you are only booking our Mendenhall Glacier Ice Adventure to see ice caves, we suggest you doing another activity as we cannot guarantee them or any specific glacier feature.
- Do I have to paddle?
Yes. It is a team effort! Everyone must be able to have full mobility of their limbs and be able to paddle along with the guide.
- How large is the canoe?
We use three different sizes of canoes. Our canoes may hold 7 guests, 10 guests, or 14 guests.
- How close will I get to the glacier?
This tour WALKS on the glacier itself. From the canoe, you will see the glacier at a safe distance. Once ashore, you will be hiking on the Mendenhall Glacier ice itself. We provide crampons to be able to walk safely on the glacier itself.
- What type of clothing should I wear?
The weather is very unpredictable in Alaska. We would like our guests to dress according to the weather, noting that the glacier will be about 10 degrees cooler than land. Guests are encouraged to dress in non-cotton layers, bring gloves, a warm hat, and sunglasses if it is sunny. We’ll provide you with waterproof jackets, pants, and boots.
- Will I see any wildlife or bears on this tour?
Bald eagles, porcupines, mountain goats, herons, shorebirds, arctic terns, and waterfowl are all common sights, however, this is not a designated wildlife tour and specific wildlife cannot be guaranteed.
- Is it safe to walk on the glacier?
Yes! The glacier surface is not slippery like you would imagine. We outfit all of our guests with crampons for extra traction. Our professional guides are with you entire tour to ensure safety.
- Is it cold on the glacier?
The temperature depends on the weather, but expect the glacier to be around 10 degrees cooler. Please dress accordingly, we suggest non-cotton layers!
- May I bring a camera, camera bag or small backpack?
Yes. We encourage guests to bring their cameras. Please keep in mind that we are canoeing across a lake, possibly in the rain so there is a chance it will get wet and we are not responsible for any damages. Small bags are allowed on tour. We provide small dry bags for guests to put their belongings in during the tour.
- Are food and drink included/can I bring my own food or drink?
Yes, we provide light snacks along with bottled water. At the conclusion of the tour, we provide a warm beverage. Please feel free to bring your own food and drink, but there are no trash cans, so you are responsible for picking out your own trash.
- Are there bathrooms available?
Flush toilets are located at our meeting and drop-off location at the Mount Roberts Tramway.
Once our adventure starts, we bring our guests directly to the West Glacier Trailhead at Mendenhall Lake. This is where we get everyone geared up, we go over safety and paddling instructions, and where we start our journey.
There are very nice pit toilets operated by the United States Forest Service located at the West Glacier Trailhead. Our guests are welcome to use these before our gear up and once we get back.
During our adventure on the Mendenhall Glacier, there are no facilities available. Mother nature does provide plenty of space, we just ask that you abide by our Leave No Trace partnership and pack out your trash.
- What sizes do you have for gear?
Adventurers come in all shapes and sizes! So we have a huge variety.
We provide top-quality equipment for our guides and guests. The North Face and Marmot are our raincoats and rain pants. Our rain boots are “Alaskan Sneakers” aka Xtratuf rain boots.
Our raincoats with hoods sizes are XS- XXL in both men and women.
Our rain pants are XS- XXL for both men and women.
Our rain boots are sizes: 5-14 Unisex
We also have limited child sizes in both rain gear and rain boots.
Customers will receive a full refund with 48 hours' notice of cancellation. Customers will also receive a full refund in case of operator cancellation due to weather or other unforeseen circumstances. Contact us by phone to cancel or inquire about a cancellation. No-shows will be charged the full price.