Coronation Island, Maurelle Islands, and Warren Island Wildernesses

Located in the Tongass National Forest in Alaska.

Location: All three of these island Wildernesses are located off the northwest coast of Prince of Wales Island, south of Kuiu Island, and north of Noyes Island. By air from Ketchikan it is 73 miles to Maurelle Islands, 75 miles to Warner Island, and 110 miles to Coronation Island. The nearest full service community to the three wilderness areas is Craig, 20 miles southeast of the Maurelle Islands. The Coronation Island Wilderness encompasses 19,232 acres; the Maurelle Islands Wilderness, 4,937; and the Warren Island Wilderness, 11,181.

Access: The Islands are accessible by boat or float plane. However, lack of boat anchorage and float plane landing sites on many of the islands, and exposure to winds and surf of the open water of the Gulf of Alaska, make access difficult. Warren Island is so exposed to the prevailing southeast winds that it is inaccessible for much of the year. The leeward side of the islands offer some protected coves and beaches.

Description: Warren Peak is a prominent feature of the Warren Island Wilderness as it rises abruptly from the seacoast to an elevation of 2,329 feet. The Coronation Island Wilderness includes the Spanish Island group as well as Coronation Island. Coronation has numerous peaks rising dramatically to nearly 2,000 feet. Maurelle Islands Wilderness is a group of nearly 30 islands rising less than 400 feet above sea level. A number of islets, pinnacles, and rocky shoals are found in the surrounding waters. The three wildernesses have windswept beaches with cliffs and rocky shorelines. Trees near the shoreline are often wind sculpted. Tall stands of spruce and hemlock are also found in more sheltered portions of the islands.

Typical wildlife on most of the islands includes wolves, black bears, Sitka black-tailed deer, and bald eagles. Sea otters are found along the coastlines, and other marine mammals, such as sea lions and seals, are common offshore and along the rocky beaches. The cliffs and rocks are important sea bird nesting and perching areas. Some of the streams provide sportfishing opportunities.

Facilities: None exist.

For further information contact: Thorne Bay Ranger District - Tongass National Forest

Published: 29 Apr 2002 | Last Updated: 31 Aug 2011
Details mentioned in this article were accurate at the time of publication



Sign up to Away's Travel Insider

Preview newsletter »