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Thread: Big Su -- Float Hunt

  1. #1
    Member wildwill's Avatar
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    Default Big Su -- Float Hunt

    Wondering if a fella wanted to launch in at the bridge on the Denali Hwy, could he float the Su down to the Parks Hwy? Any real rapids or rough water? If not floatable, is there a take-out sooner? Idea of river miles? Just a thought and wanted to see if anyone had experienced it.

    Thanks,

    Will
    Since the World is 2/3 Water and Only 1/3 Land, Figures the Good Lord Intended I Fish More Than I Plow.

  2. #2
    Moderator AKmud's Avatar
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    Isn't Devil's Canyon between the Denali and Parks hwys (I may be wrong...)? If so, I don't think I would want to raft that with a bunch of hunting gear.
    AKmud
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    The porcupine is a peacful animal yet God still thought it necessary to give him quills....

  3. #3

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    Devil's Canyon is in the way.

    Read this excerpt from Whitewater Classics.

    http://www.wetdawg.com/RSS/B2/htdocs...g.susitna.html

  4. #4
    Member wildwill's Avatar
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    Default WOW-----

    Well that answers that!

    Is there any place to take out above devils canyon without having to use a plane? Any idea of river miles one can float hunt before reaching devils canyon?

    Thanks,

    Will
    Since the World is 2/3 Water and Only 1/3 Land, Figures the Good Lord Intended I Fish More Than I Plow.

  5. #5
    Member AKDoug's Avatar
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    Default

    No. Access to everything from the Denali Highway bridge to the beginning of Devil's Canyon is aircraft access only.

  6. #6
    New member AKDSLDOG's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wildwill View Post
    Well that answers that!

    Is there any place to take out above devils canyon without having to use a plane? Any idea of river miles one can float hunt before reaching devils canyon?

    Thanks,

    Will
    There is a guy named "Mahay" that ran a 24' Almar jet boat up through devils canyon, cool video, but I say he was nuts! You could float from the parks hwy down to willow or deshka landing. Much, Much safer.

  7. #7
    Member shphtr's Avatar
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    Default Mahay

    There is a book that just hit the racks here in Anchorage about Steve Mahay - think it is called "The Mahay River" or something like that. Looks pretty interesting - there is a lot more to Steve than just running Devils Canyon.

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    Question

    [QUOTE=AKDSLDOG;142693]There is a guy named "Mahay" that ran a 24' Almar jet boat up through devils canyon, cool video, but I say he was nuts! [QUOTE]

    I thought that was a spring run up the Talkeetna river?

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    Quote Originally Posted by shphtr View Post
    There is a book that just hit the racks here in Anchorage about Steve Mahay - think it is called "The Mahay River" or something like that. Looks pretty interesting - there is a lot more to Steve than just running Devils Canyon.
    Actual title is "The Legend of River Mahay", list price $19.95. I haven't started selling it in my store yet because...well...I hadn't even heard of it before now.

    We're primarily a used book store but we still carry some new stuff. I'll be ordering it Monday.

  10. #10
    Member ak_powder_monkey's Avatar
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    how 'bout lake louise to the denali highway bridge?
    I choose to fly fish, not because its easy, but because its hard.

  11. #11

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    Quote Originally Posted by ak_powder_monkey View Post
    how 'bout lake louise to the denali highway bridge?
    Only if you can float up the Big Su for about 30 miles or so. The Tyone dumps into the Su way below the bridge. The real answer is that if you float from any of the drainages from the Denali Hwy, you will need to be picked up by a boat or plane and carried out. No execeptions to this. Actually the best floats would be from the headwaters of the Big Su to the bridge. Way more animals and easier hunting terrain. Again, you gotta get taken in by boat or plane.

  12. #12

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    I have run the Sue from the Denali highway bridge to he O'Shetna many times and will go along with a couple other comments. You can be picked up by plane or face a walk out of about 15 to 40 miles, depends on which river you walk up. You cannot float through Devil's canyon. Only two that I know of in my 36 years up here. One was Mahay in low water up river, which by the way he destroyed that boat. Another was in a Kayak down river. If you read Don Shelton's book, you will see where he picked a couple of Kayak's out of devils canyon with his super cub on floats.

  13. #13
    New member AKDSLDOG's Avatar
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    [QUOTE=swampdonkey;142704][QUOTE=AKDSLDOG;142693]There is a guy named "Mahay" that ran a 24' Almar jet boat up through devils canyon, cool video, but I say he was nuts!

    I thought that was a spring run up the Talkeetna river?
    He may have done that too, not sure, but I do know he has done the devils canyon run up river to the big su bridge on the denali, very impressive river running and a nail biting video to watch.

  14. #14
    Member tccak71's Avatar
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    [QUOTE=AKDSLDOG;143042][QUOTE=swampdonkey;142704]
    Quote Originally Posted by AKDSLDOG View Post
    he has done the devils canyon run up river to the big su bridge on the denali, very impressive river running and a nail biting video to watch.
    I remember watching that live when it happened. (At least I believe it was live, could have been a re-broadcast on the news.

    Tim

  15. #15

    Default Andy Embick and Jerry Jacques

    Devil's Canyon has been run by two different whitewater enthuiasts.

    Jerry Jacques went down it in 1981 and Andy Embick went down soon after.

    Jerry Jacques was a Brown Bear Guide out of Talkeetna and moved to Oregon.

    Andy Embick found Alaska too crowded, too civilized and left......

  16. #16
    Mark
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    Quote Originally Posted by kaboku68 View Post
    ....Andy Embick found Alaska too crowded, too civilized and left......
    Where did he go that was less crowded and civilized?

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    Cool big su float

    has anyone floated from the headwaters to the Denali Highway bridge?
    If so, who dropped you off and how long did it take (approximately) to get to the bridge?
    Thanks

  18. #18

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    Quote Originally Posted by jws View Post
    has anyone floated from the headwaters to the Denali Highway bridge?
    If so, who dropped you off and how long did it take (approximately) to get to the bridge?
    Thanks
    Its a one day float, from any of the three glaciers to the bridge. I never paid to get dropped, as I have my own equipment. But anyone of the air taxis in the area can do it. They all know the area.

  19. #19
    Member calndux's Avatar
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    Default Andy...

    Andy is not with us any longer.....He was found in PWS in his sea kayak about three (maybe more) years ago.

    Not a good story; I feel for his family.

    calndux

  20. #20

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    About 15 years ago a bunch of French tried to tube down the Su from Denali to the Parks. They made it through V canyon and almost to Devils Canyon. The Park service end up rescuing them at Danny Thomas old claims on Jay Creek. Some of them had busted bones and were lucky to be alive.
    Chuck

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