Beluga Point Scenic Turnout

There are several pods of beluga whales that run up and down Turnagain Arm.  One never knows when they will appear, but an ideal place to watch them swim by is Beluga Point.  Two rock outcroppings provide nice flat areas to sit and set up camera equipment to photograph the water below.  But even when no whales are present, I love to sit up on those rocks and take in the view of the mountains across the inlet.  Beluga Point makes a perfect spot for a picnic.

The parking lot for Beluga Point is about 7 miles south of Anchorage on the right side of the Seward Highway.  There is no fee to park here, but there are also no facilities of any kind not even garbage cans.  However, there are several information placards describing the tide action for Turnagain Arm, including a description of the bore tide.  If you pick up a tide book at just about any grocery store, you can figure out when to be at Beluga Point to see the bore tides.  These massive walls of water move up the inlet about an hour after low tide. 

For an even better view of the inlet, there is a small trail just to the east on the other side of the Seward Highway.  An undeveloped parking lot allows about 5-6 cars to park, but it is just as easy to walk across from the Beluga Point parking lot.  The trail begins on the west side of a large rock outcrop behind several boulders.  Make the short steep climb to the first large tree. There will be a side trail to the right that leads to the top of the rock outcrop.  This is an excellent place to take pictures of the inlet and mountains. There is also a small but decent place to launch a drone next to the telephone pole stump. Claimjumper and I hiked up in September 2017 and shot a video of a small pod of Belugas making their way up the inlet about 2 hours before high tide. It is easier to see the whales in the Youtube video below in full screen mode.

 

Last visited: September 2017.


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