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Thread: Klutina boating advise

  1. #1
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    Default Klutina boating advise

    Thinking about trying to run klutina to the lake in a jetcraft 1875 xs with a jmax. Is it safe/possible? Seen plenty of big heavy boats do it, never any small ones. Any advise or past experience would be appriciated. Thanks

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    Moderator bkmail's Avatar
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    I have run the river in rafts and a jetboat. I hope you have experience and are a good pilot. The river has some 4-5' standing waves rolling over boulders and is very fast as you are aware. My main concern with your boat would be the height of your freeboard and the big open bow ready to scoop up a boat load of water if you gave it a chance.
    We built an 14-16" long treble/grapple hook that was tempered and tied to about 100' of very strong line. In the event you have a motor failure/jet packed off, etc... you throw the hook into the woods/shore/brush and have the other end tied off to the bow cleat. When the hook catches it will yank the boat over to shore vs. helplessly drifting down the river in chaos. Never did use it, but thought it was worthy enough to build and carry.
    Kirk Wilson would be a good person to contact for info. He guides on that river for Kings and floats it often.
    Good luck and wear some decent lifejackets!
    BK

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    Bkmail you hit the nail on the head big bow!!!


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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    Member Lake creek fishermen's Avatar
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    Dont hit the bug rocks
    -Its better to die on your feet, than to live on your knees.
    -Put some excitment between your legs, ride a polaris!
    -Local 907 Riders Union
    http://www.youtube.com/user/AKMackdaddy?feature=mhee

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    Exactly what Bkmail said.
    I believe last year somebody wrapped a Sport John around a rock and dumped everybody in the river. I'd be very leery of taking a sport-john or XS type hull in that big water.

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    im thinking about running my 12 foot zodiak with a 15 hp johnson up to the lake and doing some trout fishing

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    Hi all,
    Can you please enlighten me as to what boat models give acceptable performance on the klutina and have the freeboard needed. I have seen it from the whole length of the trail all the way to the lake and it looks like "Idaho boats" would be best. What type boats regularly run it? To clarify I'm Not contemplating running it first without getting someone who knows it to show me the ropes. I am not a whitewater runner. Just streams like the 20 mile and placer rivers and I grew up near the Deschutes and it always claim a few boats a year due to operator error.

  8. #8
    Member broncoformudv's Avatar
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    From what I have seen and heard most guys run 20 foot or larger inboards on it. Boats with 12-14 degree deadrise hulls, V8's, windshields, etc.

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    Bronco,
    Thanks for the reply. Hope you have a safe tour.
    I have seen one video on the Klutina that looks to be shot from a 20'+ Almar but really nothing else.
    V2d

  10. #10
    Member mod elan's Avatar
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    Most folks agree the largest boat for that river is a 21 footer. Sure bigger boats do it but there is a ton of traffic during fishing season and I still remember passing one in a raft as the river flowed over the top of it. They tried to get it out with a loader and grapple hook but only managed to shred it. Agree with everything bronco has said too.

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    Mod Elan,
    Ok 21' is tops lets say. What models have you seen run it successfully without to much problem, and how much freeboard or side height is needed in a boat for that river? 28s and 30" enough or do we need an even taller sided (heavier boat).
    I have not seen it run, as the times I have been on the trail, the lake was still iced over and no one was running the river to the lake yet. There are some decent standing waves and lots of rocks.

    V2d

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    Member mod elan's Avatar
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    Any of the standard V8 inboards like TJet, Wooldridge, Weldcraft, Customweld, etc.... Last time I went up it we were in an old 19' Almar. Lots of rocks but I was giving pointers to a rookie that trip. We had buzzed around on the copper for an afternoon. Took a banzai trip up the tazlina and the third time in the boat he wants to go to klutina lake. So we went.

  13. #13
    Moderator bkmail's Avatar
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    High sides, a good self bailing bow, and a lots of horsepower. A nice thick hull would be a benefit as well. You need horsepower to hold yourself in that current and that means a large pump to move volumes of water with plenty of throttle left in reserve to keep the bow pointed in the right direction.
    Boulton, Idaho boats, T-jet, custom weld, weldcraft, Duckworth, Alumiweld, all come to mind as the type of boat I would consider favorable to run that river.
    Wacth some videos on youtube showing big hydraulics, standing 4-5' waves, and boulders in the river like the snake in Idaho and you'll get an idea on how to run the Klutina and what sort of skills are required to navigate that river.
    Remember, the easy part is going up river....it gets scary going down!
    I have run the Klutina a few times in my Alumaweld and it was "exciting" to say the least.
    Look at this website for a ton of info and lots of videos regarding big water and big HP boats run these swift rivers...
    http://www.meanchicken.net/webmain/forum/index.php
    BK
    BK

  14. #14
    Member alaska_pike's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bkmail View Post
    High sides, a good self bailing bow, and a lots of horsepower. A nice thick hull would be a benefit as well. You need horsepower to hold yourself in that current and that means a large pump to move volumes of water with plenty of throttle left in reserve to keep the bow pointed in the right direction.
    Boulton, Idaho boats, T-jet, custom weld, weldcraft, Duckworth, Alumiweld, all come to mind as the type of boat I would consider favorable to run that river.
    Wacth some videos on youtube showing big hydraulics, standing 4-5' waves, and boulders in the river like the snake in Idaho and you'll get an idea on how to run the Klutina and what sort of skills are required to navigate that river.
    Remember, the easy part is going up river....it gets scary going down!
    I have run the Klutina a few times in my Alumaweld and it was "exciting" to say the least.
    Look at this website for a ton of info and lots of videos regarding big water and big HP boats run these swift rivers...
    http://www.meanchicken.net/webmain/forum/index.php
    BK
    BK
    its almost not worth it,.. one mistake, or engine failure and thats 20 g's down the drain,.. that river absolutely rolls!

  15. #15
    Member 907pride's Avatar
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    I guided on the Klutina for a few years. I ran a 20' jetcraft out of Klutina Salmon Charters back about 10 years ago. The typical Jetcraft, weldcraft, Northriver, and Graylings do very well and are well suited for that type of river. I have seen your style of boat on the river before and to be honest they did just fine on the lower portion of the river. There was once two guys that guided out of Glennallen that ran all the way to the lake with little 16' Lunds and tiller style outboard jets on the back. I'm sure their clients got wet but I never did see them sink a boat.
    Bkmail gave you solid advice when he said to have a grappling hook ready at all times. I was once on board a brand new boat on its maiden voyage on the Klutina. It was owned by the new proud owner of Klutina Salmon Charters, Eric. I was on the back deck as he weaved down river and launched us off a rock while doing 35 miles per hour. It hit so hard that it tore a monster gash in the bottom of the boat and at the same time broke all of the motor mounts. The motor was actually sitting sideways in the doghouse. We were throwing anchors and quickly sinking. It finally came to rest on the bottom against some rocks. I am telling you this because you need to know how dangerous that river is. I have rescued many people from floating down that river and some were never found.

    I don't want to scare you off from running the river, so if you feel comfortable running it then get a friend and run it together. It is always nice to have a second boat along in case you need help. I am always down for a run. PM me if you need another boat to go along. I have a 20' jetcraft that only has the V-6 but it still has plenty of power to make the run. ~907~
    IMG_0457.jpg

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