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Thread: Chandalar River hunt info please

  1. #1

    Default Chandalar River hunt info please

    Is there anyone out there that has float hunted the Chandalar River from the haul road to Chandalar lake? Is there caribou, sheep or moose to be had on this stretch? It looks like it could access some nice country.

  2. #2
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    Default Dragging the Chandalar

    You will drag and pack a raft 10 miles for every 100 feet of floating for the first 20+ miles. After that you should only have to drag your raft about half the time. If that sounds like fun you will have a great time.

  3. #3
    Member kahahawai's Avatar
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    Default

    Agree with horse, North fork of the Chandalar which runs by the road is only ankle deep in a few spots. Might want to look at the Atigun River, I don't know much about it but maybe some one might know, there was a thread on it some time ago...some claim there are spots you'll have to portage...I'm sure someone knows here.

  4. #4

    Default What a Drag

    Yeah, I've heard that it can be a real drag. Would a canoe be a better choice?

    From the map, it seems there would be lots of huntign opportunity for sheep and caribou since mountains are within walking distance of the "river". Would a hunter have to plan on hiking tundra tussocks or is the walking pretty easy?

  5. #5
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    Default

    Once you get off the creek bottom the tundra and tussocks are as bad or worse as any were else in Alaska. And for your question about useing a canoe goes try dragging it down a gravel road after a heavy rain and see how well it holds up.

  6. #6

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    lund

    your plan aint a good one brother,been in that country a bunch and the plan aint a sound one.

  7. #7

    Default experience?

    AlaskaCub and Horse:

    You appear to be speaking from experience. If you have been down this route, why did you do it if it is so bad?

  8. #8

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    Lund

    Its simply not doable on 9 out of 10 different years with teh exception of a flood on teh 10th year, theres not enough water in the Chandalar by the highway generally to float a remote control boat nonetheless a raft or canoe with gear. I have hiked a lot of different places up there, trial and error brother. I was no different than you at one time where as I pulled out a map or viewed a computer topo program and planned doing something without going up there and checking it out to see whats what. Which is what I suggest you do before you make solid plans, unless of course you float the obvious...like the Sag, but then you cant use a gun to hunt with.

  9. #9

    Default

    Why don't you fly in to Chandalar Lake and float from there, it's more than doable.

  10. #10
    Member kahahawai's Avatar
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    Default Fly

    Yep, AK hunter45 said it right, just fly! if you drive to Chandalar shelf airstrip ( its right across from the Alaska D.O.T.) get ahold of the transporter there and fly, its probably only a 20 minute flight, just over the mountains...shouldn't cost that much...or should I say ,as much. ..But they might be booked this late in the game...but it might be worth a try.

    Not sure what kind of shape your in, but if your thinking SHEEP, then you must be in pretty good shape..But if I were you, I'd hike in the 5 miles, theres alot of access points. Look at a topo map and start a plan. stick to that plan, persevere and Overcome!!!...okay I'll get off of my military soap box now.

  11. #11
    Member martentrapper's Avatar
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    Default

    If the water is that low starting at the road, then the river bed would be a likely walking route. Better than the tundra. Looks like following the river bed takes you right through sheep country. Quite possibly caribou in that area at times also.
    I can't help being a lazy, dumb, weekend warrior.......I have a JOB!
    I have less friends now!!

  12. #12

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by AkHunter45 View Post
    Why don't you fly in to Chandalar Lake and float from there, it's more than doable.
    You could do that...but where are you going to take out? Venetie? Locals aren't super friendly there. You really have to watch out as you exit the lake too, lots of huge boulders and the water gets a little tricky. Not bad in a large raft but something to think about if your loaded. Either way you end up with two flights, 1 in and 1 out. For that kind of money you can do better on a less travelled drainage. Or even get dropped alot closer to the sheep. Would be a fun float though, but aren't they all, as long as you have water, of course. All of those rivers up there are subject to low water levels that require raft dragging in parts. The Bettles, the South Fork of the Koyokuk, The Chandalar, even the Sag on a low water year with a loaded raft. The water will change from very deep to very shallow at the end of each pool in the flat sections of the rivers. But... the upper Chandalar, that's not rafting, floating or whatever else you want to call it until you get close to Reds Lake.

  13. #13

    Default

    There's lots of gravel bars where he can be picked up, I floated past Venetie and was picked up by Wright Air service in a Courier. Thats something that needs to be prearranged though and like someone already said, it may be to late for that option.

  14. #14
    webmaster Michael Strahan's Avatar
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    Default Chandalar River

    Lundy,

    I have held off responding to this because you were asking about the upper stretch. But now folks are discussing a float from Chandalar Lake down. Not to sell you something (which is one of the reasons I held off posting), but I did a writeup on both the North and the Middle forks of the Chaldalar in my book, "Float Hunting Alaska's Wild Rivers", along with several other drainages in the Brooks Range. It might be of value to you. I believe my writeups to be the only ones in print on that river, with the exception of some limited info in Gunnar Pedersen / Rene Limeres' book "Alaska Fishing", which is available on this website.

    There are places to take out along the main stem of the Chandalar without floating all the way to Venetie.

    Hope it helps!

    -Mike
    LOST CREEK COMPANY: Specializing in Alaska hunt consultation and planning for do-it-yourself hunts, fully outfitted hunts, and guided hunts.
    CLICK HERE to send me a private message.
    Web Address: http://alaskaoutdoorssupersite.com/hunt-planner/
    Mob: 1 (907) 229-4501
    "Dream big, and dare to fail." -Norman Vaughan
    "I have climbed my mountain, but I must still live my life." - Tenzig Norgay

  15. #15

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    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Strahan View Post
    Lundy,

    I have held off responding to this because you were asking about the upper stretch. But now folks are discussing a float from Chandalar Lake down. Not to sell you something (which is one of the reasons I held off posting), but I did a writeup on both the North and the Middle forks of the Chaldalar in my book, "Float Hunting Alaska's Wild Rivers", along with several other drainages in the Brooks Range. It might be of value to you. I believe my writeups to be the only ones in print on that river, with the exception of some limited info in Gunnar Pedersen / Rene Limeres' book "Alaska Fishing", which is available on this website.

    There are places to take out along the main stem of the Chandalar without floating all the way to Venetie.

    Hope it helps!

    -Mike
    yeah, but this guy is obviously trying to save plane rides. A commercial out of Venetie would be cheaper. If you want to fly in and out there are numerous rivers to choose from, as well as flying in and out of the north fork from multiple strips. Or I guess he could go and buy your book for more info. I thought these forums were for people to communicate there ideas, opinions and knowledge. Not for free advertising.

  16. #16
    webmaster Michael Strahan's Avatar
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    Default Easy there...

    Quote Originally Posted by brackman47 View Post
    ...I thought these forums were for people to communicate there ideas, opinions and knowledge. Not for free advertising.
    Brackman,

    You are a new member here, so you cannot know that I have invested nearly twenty years of my life giving information to Alaska hunters for free, with no expectation of anything in return. I have written literally thousands of posts here on this website for that purpose as well, in the years I've been here.

    As to your remark about "free advertising", I am actually a paying advertiser on this website, and as such am assisting to make it possible for you to have this place in which to make your ideas known at no cost to yourself.

    In this particular case it really doesn't matter to me who wrote the information on the Chandalar system; I would have referred him to it the same as I have referred folks to the Pedersen / Limeres book, Karen Jettmar's book, or Jack Mosby's book. But in this case, there is only one author who has published information on the Chandalar system. By the way, I am also the party responsible for scanning all of the Alaska River Logs and making them available to this site for free, so the general public would have information on those 45 river systems. Prior to that effort these reports were very difficult for most folks to obtain. Most did not know that they existed.

    If you read through my previous posts you will notice that I usually insert links to goods or services that I believe might be of interest to folks, or to which I have referred to in my post. The intent is not so much to sell stuff to people (I only have one book, and I didn't post the link to it in my post here), but to help them readily find what they need. If a book or resource is found on this website, I usually link to that directly because I want to help keep this place alive.

    Sooo... my advice would be to enjoy the free information you have here, but try not to bite the hand that is helping to feed you.

    Best regards,

    -Mike
    LOST CREEK COMPANY: Specializing in Alaska hunt consultation and planning for do-it-yourself hunts, fully outfitted hunts, and guided hunts.
    CLICK HERE to send me a private message.
    Web Address: http://alaskaoutdoorssupersite.com/hunt-planner/
    Mob: 1 (907) 229-4501
    "Dream big, and dare to fail." -Norman Vaughan
    "I have climbed my mountain, but I must still live my life." - Tenzig Norgay

  17. #17

    Default

    Sooo... my advice would be to enjoy the free information you have here, but try not to bite the hand that is helping to feed you.

    Best regards,

    -Mike

    Well, I guess just because I'm new to this forum that means that your 20 years of experience trumps my 41 years of experience in this state. If you want to advertise on this and other related sites, then more power to you. It's a wise investment as you will reach many of those who would be interested in your services. As a new member to the Alaska Outdoors Forums I have found numerous instances where you have inserted your products or services in your replies to individuals seeking advice. If the Forums advocate this type of self promotion then so be it. I'm not on a crusade to stop any behavior like this, but I also feel fine with giving my opinion on the matter. If you were truly out to help others with your knowledge and experience you could have just told Lundy where the take-outs were or even pointed towards an Air Taxi that would help in the matter. This isn't so much information that it couldn't be quickly and easily conveyed in a short reply. You chose to direct him towards purchasing your book. That, my friend, is self promotion, like it or not. I'm absolutely sure that your book holds a wealth of knowledge on many different river systems throughout Alaska and would be very useful to rafters/floaters of all experience levels, I'm not knocking the product. I've just witnessed you taking what seems like a less than impartial position in this and other issues. This will probably bring about some sort of feedback on your part, as is your right. It just makes me question your role as a "moderator".

  18. #18

    Thumbs down wait a minute

    this ain't a bar.

  19. #19

    Default Thanks to both

    I've posted here to get feedback from anyone who can help me out. This is a great forum and I think it's invaluable for those that hunt/fish and enjoy the Alaska outdoors.

    Michael provides a much needed service to us on the forum. Not only does he moderate, he pays to keep this site operating and some self promotion is expected. I find he interjects only when he feels it can help others and isn't blatantly pushing his products.

    I DO have your book Michael and I think it is invaluable in float hunt planning. I've read the sections on the other branches and wish I could float those right now.

    However, Brackman is right about costs. I cannot afford flying in and out on a trip so am looking at float out/fly back hunts. I appreciate him seeing this from my point of view.

    Both of you have given me helpful advice through PM's and I much more informed as a result. Keep sharing your years of experience with us all on the forum. We appreciate it.

    lundy

  20. #20
    Member kahahawai's Avatar
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    Default Figure it out!

    Lundy. as you can see obviously, the Chandalar float is not doable from the road system, but by reading all the responses, you could actually put pieces of a puzzle together, and you have many options to do this hunt. i am not a proffesional hunting advisor as Mike Strahan is, but I can tell you that about a third of the miles on my truck is Dalton Hwy miles, and have figured out where and what to do to pursue game up there. I had to figure everything out myself, because everybody is so tight lipped about secret spots and access areas etc. I have already been counseled, about giving away too much info. on this forum. So I am not going to say where I would go if i was to do a walk in or whatever. But I learned from reading the threads and Topo map in hand, and by being up there so much, I have aquired some Invaluable information on my own. The bottom line is...You can do this hunt for just the price of fuel/food utilized to get up and while your there......very feasable to me!

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