Deep Creek State Recreation Area
Guide

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Introduction

The Deep Creek State Recreation Area is one of Alaska’s Kenai Peninsula’s most scenic shoreline recreation areas. The park rests along the shores of the Cook Inlet and on a clear day, Mount Redoubt and Mount Iliamna, two active volcanoes in the Aleutian Range, can be seen towering over the blue waters of the inlet.

During the summer, the Deep Creek Area is a favorite stop for travelers driving from Homer to Soldotna because the viewable wildlife along the Kenai Peninsula is unmatchable. On any given day, hundreds of bald eagles swarm the beaches pulling salmon and salmon parts from the water. People who want to see these magnificent creatures should stand quietly and wait to hear the distinct high-pitched whistle of the eagle, or wait for the birds to comb the sand for scraps of leftover fish. Not many locations in the United States provide people with the opportunity to see the majestic birds so close, and those who do see the birds will remember the experience for the rest of his or her lifetime.

The campgrounds at the Deep Creek State Recreation area open as soon as the snowmelt allows. Campers visiting before the official season begins can still stay in the campsites, but please be aware that the drinking water is winterized and not available for use until the park opens for the season. Off-season campers don’t have to pay for camping until the drinking water is available.

Whether you plan to stay overnight, or you are just passing by the area, the Deep Creek State Recreation Area should be a must-see along your journey.

RV Rentals in Deep Creek State Recreation Area

Transportation in Deep Creek State Recreation Area

Driving

The Deep Creek State Recreation Area is located along the Sterling Highway in the Kenai Peninsula near Ninilchik. The area is located 35 miles north of Homer and 41 miles south of Soldotna, Alaska.

There are three camping areas and a day use area. Depending on which area you choose to camp will determine the exit you will take off the highway. The recreation area charges a daily-use fee that is an additional cost added to the overnight camping fees. Please use the self-pay station to pay for your stay.

Please adhere to the maximum allowed RV size of 35 feet. The turn around areas may be difficult to maneuver with larger RVs and trailers.

Parking

Public Transport

Campgrounds and parking in Deep Creek State Recreation Area

Campsites in Deep Creek State Recreation Area

Reservations camping

First-come first-served

Deep Creek State Recreation Area Campground

The Deep Creek State Recreation Area Campground is a large, first-come, first-serve rustic campground. RVs and trailers up to 35 feet in length are permitted. Larger rigs will have trouble maneuvering within the tight turns and gravel-surfaced driveways and roads. The primitive campground has drinking water and vault toilets for campers who are staying overnight. The campground fee and daily parking fee are two separate costs, and campers can pay the fee by using the self-pay stations when entering the park. RVers must pay the fee within fifteen minutes of securing a site. This campground doesn't have a dump station. The closest dump facility is located in the Ninilchik View State Recreation Area, which is two miles north of Deep Creek. Please silence your generators during the park’s posted quiet hours to maintain a peaceful environment for all guests. Quiet hours are from 11:00 pm to 6:00 am.

Deep Creek South Scenic Overlook Campground

The Deep Creek South Scenic Overlook Campground is first of the two smaller campgrounds in the Deep Creek State Recreation Area. The campground facilities are similar to the main campground, but the sites in this location have asphalt pads and a picnic area as well as dumpsters, drinking water, vault toilets, and fire rings. This first-come, first-serve rustic campground allows RVs and trailers up to 35 feet in length. The campground fee and daily parking fee are two separate costs, and campers can pay the fee by using the self-pay stations when entering the park. RVers must pay the fee within fifteen minutes of securing your site. This campground doesn't have a dump station. The closest dump facility is located in the Ninilchik View State Recreation Area, which is two miles north of Deep Creek. Please silence your generators during the park’s posted quiet hours to maintain a peaceful environment for all guests. Quiet hours are from 11:00 pm to 6:00 am.

Deep Creek North Scenic Overlook Campground

The Deep Creek North Scenic Overlook Campground is the second of the two smaller campgrounds in the Deep Creek State Recreation Area. The campground facilities are the same at the South camping area and similar to the main campground, but the sites in this location have asphalt pads and a picnic area as well as dumpsters, drinking water, vault toilets, and fire rings. This first-come, first-serve rustic campground allows RVs and trailers up to 35 feet in length. The campground fee and daily parking fee are two separate costs, and campers can pay the fee by using the self-pay stations when entering the park. RVers must pay the fee within fifteen minutes of securing your site. This campground doesn't have a dump station. The closest dump facility is located in the Ninilchik View State Recreation Area, which is two miles north of Deep Creek. Please silence your generators during the park’s posted quiet hours to maintain a quiet and serene environment for all guests. Quiet hours are from 11:00 pm to 6:00 am.

Alternate camping

Seasonal activities in Deep Creek State Recreation Area

In-Season

Fishing

Cook Inlet and Deep Creek are famous for their large halibut and king salmon fishing. The area attracts anglers not only because of the abundant fishing but also because of the convenient water access. The Deep Creek area is easy to get to from many places in the Kenai, and people don’t have to have a boat to fish from the shores of Deep Creek. The Cook Inlet and Kachemak Bay have fishing regulations that dictate saltwater fishing licenses, catch limits, and permitted fishing for each season. Deep Creek also has rules that govern fishing both of the salt water as well as the freshwater variety. Before heading to the water, ensure you have the proper license, tags, and you are aware of the fishing restrictions, as the area maintains strictly enforced fishing regulations.

Boating

Getting into the waters of Cook Inlet isn’t as simple as dropping your boat in the water. The beachfront water entry is challenging because of the sand and the changing tides. Recreational and fishing boats that don’t need help launching may use the small watercraft and boat launch located near the main camping area. If you need assistance, a private company operates a tractor assisted boat launch to get boats safely in and out of the water. The company helps all types of boaters, both fishing charters as well as recreational boaters. For information on boating regulations or to contact the tractor assisted boat launch company, visit the Deep Creek website.

Clam Digging

Break out your water and mud-proof boots, your wet-weather gear, a bucket, and your clam gun and head to the shoreline near Cook Inlet to clam. Digging for Razor Clams in the Cook Inlet is a family-fun activity that people all ages can enjoy. The Alaska Department of Fish and Game governs the clamming in the area and provides up to date information on clamming conditions. Contact the department for licensing ages and regulations before heading to the shore. Clamming is regulated like fishing, and valid permits are required to search for clams.

Off-Season

Wildlife Viewing

Deep Creek is one of the area’s most scenic places to see bald eagles year-round. The bald eagles whose habitat is near Deep Creek have plenty of access to fresh and saltwater fish and the shelter of tall trees that they need to nest and roost. This ideal habitat creates one of the most prolific eagle viewing places in the Kenai Peninsula, and the eagles, from juvenile to adult, approach the water with confidence, often unphased by human presence. Other birds, like the sandhill crane and shorebirds, also inhabit the saltwater marsh area, and these birds are usually seen during May. Birdwatchers who stay long enough are often lucky to see sea otters, seals, and whales offshore, making the wildlife watching experience something worth talking about.

Charters

Many people visit Alaska with the intent of chartering a fishing or hunting trip. Because of the popularity of chartered activities, there are numerous outfitters to choose from when picking what kind of charter best meets your interests and needs. Ninilchik is the closest town to Deep Creek and offers charters for activities like deep-sea fishing for halibut or guided hunting charters. Family activities like bear viewing tours, glacier tours, and gold prospecting tours are also available out of the Ninilchik area. Picking an adventure never sounded so fun!

ATV Trails

Adventure seekers will love the opportunity to see the Kenai Peninsula off the beaten path! Bring or rent an ATV and traverse the backcountry of Alaska, or take to the trail system that winds in and around the Deep Creek area. Visit Ninilchik, Homer, or any of the other local areas to inquire about renting ATVs, and begin your adventure the rugged, off-road way. If a self-guided tour isn’t for you, then check out some of the all-terrain tours offered in the area.

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