What kind of wildlife will I see on my Skagway tour? (Part 4)
A fish! You may see one of these too… on the end of my fishing line.
In this beloved blog series, we’ve discussed all sorts of wildlife that you may see on a Skagway wildlife tour including bears, whales, seagulls, moose, sea lions, porcupines, beaver, and many more. You’re probably thinking, “Wow! There can’t possibly be any more animals in Alaska to see!” Nope. You are wrong again.
Alaska is teeming with all sort of creatures you’ve probably never heard of, so our final blog is going to cover animals that you may see on the tour and say, “Whoa! What the heck fire is that crazy looking thing?!” Let’s get started.
The wildlife of your dreams or denizens of your nightmares?
Everyone knows what a bear is, but not a lot of people know what a pika is. Well, you’re about to find out. What about a hoary marmot? What is a marmot and why are they hoary? Good question.
Let’s once again break each animal down one-by-one. Remember, we will list the Skagway wildlife tours where you’re most likely to see these crazy critters.
Arctic fox – Skagway is not in the Arctic, but we often see Arctic foxes. What gives? Well, this is just the name for these cute little animals that look a lot like your Aunt Nancy’s Pomeranian. What does the fox say? Nothing because it’s an animal and can’t talk. You can see foxes on a number of tours but Yukon tours offer the best opportunity for sightings.
Pika – These little varmints live high up in the mountains, but you’ll have to keep an eye out for them. Pika look like cute little mice but they are actually related to rabbits, not rodents. Our City and Summit tour offers the best chance to see a pika up close and personal, but they’re still a rare sighting mostly because they’re small and most people mistake them for mice. Fun fact: If a pika wanders too close to a lake, it may get eaten by a pike, which is pretty funny for everyone other than the pika.
Hoary marmot – Despite having a name that makes small children giggle, hoary marmots are not promiscuous. Hoary actually means “silvery” or “gray and white,” which describes the color of the marmots that live high in the mountains around Skagway. You can see a marmot on a hike into the alpine or on any tour that goes over the White Pass Summit, including the train.
Pine martin – There are 7 animals in the weasel family here in Skagway, and this is one of them. Some other oddballs are the least weasel, river otter, and mink. All of these mammals are cute as the dickens except the wolverine which will tear your throat out. You can see pine martin on many Dyea tours.
Boreal toad – Did you know there are toads in Skagway? No one is going to blame you if you didn’t. If you’re wondering how they survive the long, brutal winter, you’re not alone. Toads are commonly spotted in boggy areas, but you probably won’t spend a lot of time waddling through muskeg so it would be best not to add these croakers to your wildlife bucket list.
There are enough animals in Skagway to make this a 40-part series, but that would be too much
As you can see, Skagway is resplendent with wildlife. We didn’t even cover animals like the eider, salmon snailfish, or the illusive hareibou. No matter what Skagway wildlife tour you choose, be sure to bring a camera and be ready to snap the photo of a lifetime.