Coghill Lake Cabin offers opportunities for year-round rest and recreation near College Fiord in Prince William Sound. The cabin is nestled on a lagoon on the southwest shore of beautiful Coghill Lake, which is known for its excellent salmon fishing.
This remote site can be accessed by floatplane, which is typically a 50-minute flight from Anchorage or an hour from Cordova. Guests are responsible for their own travel arrangements and safety, and must bring several of their own amenities. Hike in options include accessing the Cabin via a very rugged three-mile trail leaving from Coghill Bay (East side of Port Wells).
Salmon fishing is excellent from the lakeshore and the lagoon. Anglers can fish for sockeye from mid-June through July, pink and chum in July and August, and Coho salmon in August and September. Dolly Varden trout fishing is also good from May through October. The Coghill River, which connects the lagoon to College Fiord, is also a popular spot for sockeye fishing.
Guests can use the small rowboat and oars provided by the Forest Service; please provide your own personal floatation device. Hunting for black bear and waterfowl is available during designated seasons. Permits are available through the State of Alaska.
Berry pickers will find plentiful salmonberries and blueberries near the cabin in season. Hikers have access to a challenging three-mile trail to Port Wells, but the brush is often thick and some route-finding skills are necessary.
The cabin is a 16x16-foot A-frame with a main floor and a sleeping loft. It accommodates up to six guests and comes equipped with wooden bunks, a kerosene heating stove, a table, benches and an outhouse with a pit toilet.
No water, electricity or fuel for the heater is provided. Guests are responsible for bringing their own drinking water, kerosene for heater (typically ~1 gallon/ day is sufficent), a cook stove, flashlights or lanterns, bedding, mattresses, toilet paper, garbage bags, cookware, dishes and utensils.
Please pack out what you bring in to leave a clean Cabin for the next visitors!
Coghill Lake Cabin is surrounded by rolling hills on the edge of a stand of conifer trees next to a shallow lagoon, which is connected to the lake by a passage. The cabin offers a view of most of the lagoon, with the Chugach Mountains and glaciers in the background.
A large variety of wildlife lives in the area, including Sitka black-tailed deer, bald eagles, waterfowl and river otter. The Coghill Lake area is particularly known for its black bear population, so visitors are urged to practice bear safety (learn about bear safety).
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Coghill has an outstanding A-frame cabin and the view from the front porch is one of the best I have seen in visits to over 20 different USFS cabins in Alaska. The view included 3,000-4,000 ft peaks covered with glaciers, and a beautiful lagoon right in front of the cabin. The flight there and back from Anchorage was incredible, we saw hundreds of glaciers, several massive ones. The area around Coghill is very swampy, and it was very buggy when we were there in the middle of Sept., all biting black flies, no mosquitos.
the trail that supposedly exists to the estuary is overgrown, criss-crossed with bear trails, hard to find, and very brushy where you do find it. We wondered why nobody has placed any trail markers on the trail from the cabin to College Fiord? I realize the USFS does not have the resources to maintain or improve the trail, but if it was marked regular use would help maintain the trail somewhat. But it also seems like the vegetation grows so fast there that nature is doing its best to obliterate any trail, and the many bear trails make it hard to figure out which trail is which.
When it rains the river downstream of the cabin is too large to cross, so you become very restricted in where you can fish downstream. We brought a 2.5 HP kicker motor, so we were able to explore all of the tribs that feed into the upper end of the the lake.
we were fishing for silvers and our group caught very few during a week. The place is very well known for sockeye, but they run in July and we were there in Sept. the lagoon in front of the cabin and lake had about 20 harbor seals that were on constant prowl for silvers. The harbor seals were also in the river down below the cabin. with so many seals it is hard to imagine that the silvers ever have a chance to stack up anywhere without being scattered. The cabin log book mentions the seals being there more than 20 years back, so they just seem to be a feature of this lake/lagoon system.
The Coghill cabin was in excellent shape when we visited, and very clean thanks to the preceding group (the “Igloo Boys”). the area around the lake is incredibly beautiful!! the stove worked well but only has one heat setting (but that was not a problem).
THE ROWBOAT IS MISSING AN OAR, and really needs a new set of oars and oar locks so that the remaining oar can serve as a back up. The Igloo Boys improvised a shovel as a replacement for the missing oar, but it is only a matter of time before somebody drops the oar/shovel to the bottom of the lake and then they will have to row their way back to the cabin with only a single oar. If you visit this cabin make arrangements with the USFS to get a new set of oars, or bring your own. Without oars you will be very limited in where you can get to at this cabin.