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Thread: travel on lower Birch Creek

  1. #1
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    Default travel on lower Birch Creek

    Greetings,

    I'm new to this forum, but already it looks like a great resource with a friendly community. A very short introduction: I'm a student from University of Alberta, in Edmonton, Canada, working on geology of some of the large river bluffs in Yukon/Alaska. Most of our work involves establishing records of plant remains, volcanic ashes, and evolution of permafrost over the last several million years. We've mostly worked on the Yukon - have covered the river from its confluence with the Stewart in Canada down to near Ruby. Our rig is a Harbercraft XS 2175 - a great boat for the kind of work we do.

    I'm interested in checking out a site on lower Birch Creek, about 15-20 miles downstream of the Stesse Hwy bridge near Circle. I'm hoping someone can warn me if that stretch of river is a little tight for our 21ft boat. I know water levels fluctuate dramatically depending on rain in the basin. Some colleagues did this trip in a river boat w/ prop in July 2001, but water level data for that time are not available for comparison to current levels. Also, I'm curious how worried I should be about leaving our truck/trailer at the put-in (new truck w/ Canadian plates).

    Any comments are greatly appreciated.

    Thanks,
    Alberto

  2. #2
    Member tjm's Avatar
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    Default

    hard to find water too tight for the boat your running.....lol

  3. #3
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    Default just went up some rivers near that area

    Hey!!! We just did a moose scouting trip around that area, and ventured up almost every little creek/ river we could find. I would say the only problem you might run into is logs /trees that have fallen in. Those are the only probelms we had. For comparison I run a 20' wolldridge with a 150 merc outboard. I assume your boat might run a little shallower than mine, and we had some weight in there (extra gas) to simulate a hunting load. We put in at Eagle and went down stream from there, had ZERO problems with truck and trailer parking, and everyone seemed really helpful. Try calling the chamber of commerce in the town, or a park service person in the area, they are a wealth of knowledge. We talked to them after we went out, and wished we had talked to them before, they gave us excellent information. You probably know, the yukon was really pretty high this spring once everything melted, came up from being super low, but there was alot of trash floating down river, had to clean the jet a few times!!! Good luck!
    T

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    Default And...

    didn't see any moose sign, or very little. so we were a little dissappointed. Let me know if you find any good sign, and where. Hopefully it is on public land!!!
    Tim

  5. #5
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    Default Shallow this year

    A friend ran that stretch of Birch this spring several times...in an airboat. He's been doing the trip for years, but came back this year saying that if he'd had one of his old jet boats he'd have never made it. Just make sure you know how to get the boat afloat once beached...there's some tight turns in there. Good luck!

  6. #6
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    Default THanks all...

    Thanks for the comments - I'll post a quick report once I get off the creek.

  7. #7
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    Default lower Birch Creek trip report

    Just got back to Fairbanks after a quick trip down Birch Creek from the Stesse Hwy between Circle and Central. Water level on 8 July was low enough that we got stuck on several bars going down, not too bad getting off them going d/s. Someone who knew the creek and wasn't afraid to really beach their boat MIGHT pass over that stuff going fast, but that's not really my gig. Water level rose several feet in 12 hours and made for a much more relaxing trip upriver from where we camped near Thermokarst Ck. I would not have wanted to run back upstream at the same water level we had on 8 July with our jetboat - next time I'll bring something more easily dragged over bars if needed.

    Alberto

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