Paddling Pennock Island, Alaska

Pennock Island is located in the U.S. state of Alaska near the city of Ketchikan. It was named for the prospector Homer Pennock, around 1895 by Captain W.E. George, a local pilot. The ancestral tribal burial ground of the Taan ta Kwaan (Tongass people) and the Sanyaa Kwaan (Cape Fox people) are located on Pennock Island.

This paddle has been a evening favorite of my wife and I since we began dating in 2008. Not only does it provide incredible views and protected water, it is only a couple hour paddle to circumnavigate the entire island, but during the summer the sun sets right along the narrows which only adds to its beauty.

With the increase in cruise ships during the summer months, we have found that it is easier to plan a evening trip than during the day, due to the large amount of traffic both on the land as well as on the water. We will often start from the downtown docks in Ketchikan, and paddle across the narrows to the North end of Pennock Island and paddle counter clockwise around the island. We have found that this direction offers the best views on both sides of the island. As your begin the paddle, the sun will be on your back, but as you come around the other side, you have the opportunity to watch the sunset as you paddle along the coast of Pennock Island, or cross over and work the coastline of Ketchikan.

If you are spending any time in Ketchikan, this summer, we highly recommend renting a few kayaks and exploring this beautiful island and catching the amazing sunsets over the water.


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