I had not read the above thread about Danger on the Upper Kenai, but I wish I would have.
Strahan wrote, " A large cottonwood log is bridging the main channel and there is no way to avoid it by the time you can see it. I have been through there many times and the current smokes along pretty good in there."
We were fishing/camping on the Upper Kenai this Sunday/Monday. My 16' cat was loaded with 5 people (4 relatives from Montana) and a lot of gear About a mile or two above Jims there is a side channel on river left; the river was flowing high and there was plenty of water moving through the channel, so we decided to do a little exploring. After about 5 minutes of mellow floating, we all of a sudden had about 20 seconds before we hit the log jam. I pushed hard river right (hoping to get part of my boat on the bank and not on the log) and a couple of the guys on the bow were able to grab an overhanging tree on the bank. We all got on the high side and the boat stabalized. Two guys got out and secured the boat with a "crude" z-drag. All of our gear was secure and we did not lose anything or anyone. We were able to unload the boat, pull it off the log (I was impressed that my NRS tubes were not punctured), and portage it sideways through the trees to the main river in about 30 minutes.
I have had mishaps on the Upper Willow, Matanuska, and a scary situation kayaking on a Kodiak creek; however in all those situations I was prepared for white water and my boat was not loaded. This situation sucked and could have been a lot worse. It is easy to become complacent when floating an "easy" river.
Hope this helps someone.