Southeast Alaska Birding Trail Klawock

Big Salt Lake

A good spot to look for a variety of waterfowl and shorebirds.

Big Salt Lake is a good spot to look for a variety of waterfowl and shorebirds. Trumpeter Swans use Big Salt Lake between October and January, where the swans rest and feed here for a few days to a few weeks during migrations, though some swans overwinter at the lake. Waterfowl seek shelter on the lake when there are storms on the Pacific Ocean. Species include: Bufflehead, Barrow’s Goldeneye and a variety of sea ducks. Use the pullouts along the road to access the lake. There is a trail down to the estuary from the highway. During the winter observe swans from a distance with scopes and binoculars to avoid disturbing them. This site is located on Alaska Native lands managed by the Sealaska Corporation. There is also a boat launch where you can launch a skiff or kayak into the lake.


From Klawock travel approximately 8 miles north on State Highway 929/Boundary Rd to Big Salt Lake. There is roadside parking and several spur roads that access the lake.

Bufflehead. Photo: Pam Polcyn, APA 2016

Trail Information:

  • There is a user trail to the estuary from the highway

Birding Resources:

Bird Species Checklist:

Other Resources:

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