WELCOME to Shuyak Island State Park
Island State Park comprises most of the island's 47,000 acres. The
park encompasses part of a coastal forest system, unique to the Kodiak
Archipelago, which contains only one tree species: Sitka spruce.
Besides a virgin Sitka spruce forest, the park includes miles of
rugged coastline, beaches and protected waterways. The island is
located 54 air miles north of Kodiak, Alaska.
Shuyak Island's compact
dimensions measure 12 miles long and 11 miles wide, but contain more
sheltered interior waterways than anywhere in the Kodiak
The land and water of the area host an infinite variety of
seabirds. Otters share the sea with whales, harbor seals, sea lions,
and Dall porpoises. Kodiak brown bear and Sitka black-tailed deer
inhabit the island's forests.
If you visit Shuyak, you may either camp or rent one of the four
public use cabins. Groceries and other supplies must be purchased
before you arrive on Shuyak.
A state park ranger or volunteer may contact you during your visit.
Our staff is there to assist you. They may be able to provide
communication to the mainland, but only in an emergency. Visitors
should be as self-sufficient as possible; assistance could be hours or
The Shuyak experience is one of the wilderness. Those who have
planned their trip carefully find the greatest rewards.
In addition to the wildlife already mentioned, visitors can view
puffins, black oystercatchers, cormorants, common and red-throated
loons, mergansers, harlequin ducks, and bald eagles. Migrant birds
arrive in May and June. Plant enthusiasts can find alpine botany at
sea level on the rugged capes along the outer coastline.
There are few hiking trails within the park, and thick forests and
Devil's Club make overland travel challenging. Shorelines provide
routes of travel but may be covered with water during high tides.
Shuyak is best experienced combining land and sea travel. For more
information, see the Shuyak Island Trail Network page.
Outdoor Safety Weather
Shuyak Island is at the tip of the Kodiak Archipelago and is
subject to severe and unpredictable weather. Sea conditions can
deteriorate rapidly: large swells, rough seas, high winds, and heavy
surf occur frequently in open waters. The inner bays are generally
protected, but in either area in these waters hypothermia can set in
within minutes. Generally, rainfall averages about 4-6 inches per
month in the summertime. Temperatures (Fahrenheit) range from the low
40's to the low 60's.
When conditions are poor, be patient and wait for the weather to
improve. Rescue assistance could be hours or days away.
A limited number of Kodiak brown bear (Ursus arctos) are found on
Shuyak Island. Use caution and avoid surprise encounters; these
animals are potentially fierce. Do not leave any food items outside of
cabins or otherwise accessible to bears. Discard fish and animal
entrails in ocean water.
Weapons are allowed in the park for hunting or for personal
protection from wildlife. Shooting within one-fourth mile of any cabin
is prohibited. Target shooting is not allowed in the park.
The Public Use Cabins
Two public use cabins are located on Big Bay. Carry Inlet and
Neketa Bay each have one public use cabin. Each cabin can accommodate
up to eight people. The fee for the cabin is $75 for peak use and $60
non-peak use per night. This is a flat fee; it does not change
according to party number. Cabins are rented to only one party at a
time. Visitors can stay in the same cabin for up to seven consecutive
nights per month.
Fresh water is available at all cabin sites but requires rapid
boiling for five minutes or filtration by devices effective to less
than five microns to protect against natural contaminants.
Bottled propane provides gas for a two-burner stove and propane
lights in each cabin. Use of propane is limited to 25 lbs. per party -
bring extra if you think you will need more.
Each cabin has a wood burning stove adequate to heat the 12' x 20'
structure. Firewood is provided, but must be split. Tools are also
A gravity-fed water system is plumbed into each cabin. Water must
be hand-carried for this system. Water jugs are provided.
A shower building is beside each cabin and provides a warm
gravity-fed shower after water is heated.
Each cabin contains a basic supply of cooking pots, pans, and
utensils for four to six people. Some people prefer to bring
Each cabin has four double bunk beds to sleep eight people. Foam
pads are provided.
What to Bring
Full body raingear, Gloves, hat, waterproof boots, tennis shoes
Extra food/clothing Sleeping bag/towels (blankets not provided) First
aid kit Matches in waterproof container Topo maps: Afognak C-1,2,3,
and B-2 Compass and tide book (use Seldovia tables) Watercraft/motor
Additional Items for Boating
Life jackets Signal devices Extra line Extra fuel (none available
in park) Anchor gear, oars, paddles Marine VHF or CB Nautical chart
#16604, Shuyak and Afognak Emergency Locator Transmitter Portable camp
stove and fuel
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