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Thread: Best Interior River Trip ?

  1. #1

    Default Best Interior River Trip ?

    Opinions on best Interior River Trips for a 20 or 22 ft jet boat?

    Some important criteria might be be:

    (1) Can safely leave your tow vehicle parked for a week or longer at the launch with some hope of not getting broken into or vandalized.
    (2) Upriver direction from launch so if you break down you can float (row) back out.
    (3) Good camping sites
    (4) Good fishing sites
    (5) Views of mountains

    Hope to have more time this summer and was thinking of "going north".....

  2. #2
    Member akshrop's Avatar
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    My two favorite are the Minto flats system and the Yukon. Both are extremely congestion free, in my experience. I have never had a vehicle messed with either in Minto village or Circle. The Yukon is an extremely easy river above Circle (for at least 90 miles, which is as far as I have been). It also has everything you were asking about. I have only hunted the Yukon, but have heard great stories of its fishing. Minto can be tricky getting out of the lake at the village launch for both shallow weedy water and finding the river. Once out of the lake, the water is deep and easy running. Fishing is off the chain, but good, dry camping is harder to find. I know of 4-6 great spots and at least 3 of those are easy to spot from the river, you canít miss them. I have never run into more than two other groups camping out there, so again it is far from congested. I see maybe 2-4 other boats per day out there. I know about 125 river miles in Minto by heart and it is not a hard read at all. It is a slow moving sough type system unless flood water is pouring into the rivers. Fish the clear water weedy lagoons and the confluences. The lake itself is worth fishing as you transition in and out. Numbers are often less, but the monsters are in there. If you time your trip with the Shee fish run, you will see more people, but not so many as it is crowded and you get the benefit of awesome Shee fishing. You canít go wrong. Good luck and good fishing.

    Oh one last note, the roads into both places are rough. Do not load your boat like a trailer or you might have broken gear and a broken boat/trailer. Your boat will be covered in dust so bad that the first few minutes of boating at speeds will be in a dust storm and all gear in your boat will be a nightmare.

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    Quote Originally Posted by titobandito View Post
    Opinions on best Interior River Trips for a 20 or 22 ft jet boat?

    Some important criteria might be be:

    (1) Can safely leave your tow vehicle parked for a week or longer at the launch with some hope of not getting broken into or vandalized.
    (2) Upriver direction from launch so if you break down you can float (row) back out.
    (3) Good camping sites
    (4) Good fishing sites
    (5) Views of mountains

    Hope to have more time this summer and was thinking of "going north".....
    Tough criteria for the interior - most of my favorites require down river runs -

    1 - The only place I have ever had any problems with my vehicle was in Circle - Had the window broken out once and items stolen - The only boat landing that I haven't used is Minto Village.

    2 - Up river really limits the options - Yukon Bridge up river is a good trip but lots of posted corporation land to contend with. Circle up river - I haven't done. Delta Junction - Up river on the Tanana has possibilities. Manly up river you can access Minto and the Kantishna.

    3 - Good camping spots are easy to find where ever you go - Just be aware of corporation land

    4 - Good interior fishing is limited to Pike, Grayling, Burbot, and occasionally Sheefish when the timing is right. My favorite is by far the Pike fishing.

    5 - The best mountain views I have seen from the river in the interior were in the Delta area or up the Kantishna.

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    Default river trip

    Kantishna to the Muddy and into Lake Minchumina.

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    Default Manley launch

    I have launched at Manley many times. Great folks there too. I've had a couple serious problems and folks have been really helpful. Never a vehicle problem either. Kantishna is a neat run but look at the map close. That river snakes back and forth on itself. 10 miles on the map is about 40+ by water. Plan accordigly with fuel. The run up into Minto is a good one. You can start fishing for good pike as soon as you get into the green water. I've given the hint to a few others. Fish at night in lower Minto drainage. The BIG pike are low light hunters. During the summer 9 pm on til morning is a great time to hit 35 or bigger pike. Run up during the day, set-up camp, have dinner then get ready for a good evening fishing. Just a hint on a good safe upriver run.
    The note about hauling stuff in your boat is spot on. Put it in your truck (canopy preferred) and cover your motor well. That dirt gets everywhere on the dirt roads (mud if raining) Heck of a mess.

  6. #6
    Member akriverrat's Avatar
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    salcha is a beutiful clear river and there is some good grayling fishing if you get far enough up. lots of boat traffic though. if i could id hit the yukon and go downriver to the nowitna. ill bet you be in pike hog heaven and possibly sheefish too.

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    Member fishin_ak's Avatar
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    I've heard good things lately about Manley and the fishing/hunting opportunities out of there. Anyone done the Ray river from the Yukon. I've heard folks say that the next record Pike is going to come out of there.

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    Member AK LIVIN's Avatar
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    Default Anyone ever ran the Tatonduk River

    Just wondering if anyone has ran the Tatonduk or Nation rivers and what the trip is like, "any fish?"

  9. #9
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    Default Chatanika?

    You could run down the Chatanika into the Minto Flats, used to be good pike fishing. The hard part is driving from Murphy Dome to the river, the road is rough and can get pretty wet down by the river. Not many people and lots of lakes to play in. Bring a GPS!

  10. #10
    Member OzAK's Avatar
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    Default Decisions, decisions

    Tito, options are good. As was said before, the Salcha has your criteria, have a cabin up there myself I like it so much. Other choices that will do as well: Take a look at the Goodpaster, enters the Tanana a bit upstream from the Richardson highway, clear water. Tatonduk is runable but is a short run as I understand. The Nation runable also, and there's the Kandik too. One of those 3 (I think it's the Nation or Kandik) has a bedrock filled mouth that is a beast at low water, can tear up a boat. This info on these three is from those that have spent quite a bit of time there. Next try the Delta, albeit a bit rocky (don't ask me how I know this) but the scenery and fishing were great. Plenty of camp spots too, a bit busy during hunting season as is anywhere. Launch from the highway upsteam from Black Rapids, get into the clear water above Eureka creek.
    I havn't hit near enough others, some other good choices off the Yukon below Circle as well but that cuts into your upstream running.
    You couldn't pay me enough to drag a nice jetboat of larger (20"+) size down off the back of Murphy Dome to the Chatanika-not if you value your equipment. It's not much of a road. There's more, look up the Dalton, research well, have fun be safe. Oz

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    Default A rock named OZ

    Hey Oz, tell me, how many rocks have your name on them on the Delta? Any? More than one?
    Ditto the Murphy Dome road. Not only rough, but the mud holes at the bottom are bottomless.
    The Tanana from the Delta bridge up takes you past the entrance to Clearwater lake, the Delta Clearwater, and the Goodpaster. Clearwater is short, and not really suited to a big boat because of the speed you may need to carry, but it is beautiful. Very clear, very clean.
    You can also run up the Tanana to Healy lake. Early in the year it is not weedy. Remember, there is no camping spots on the lake. Everything is private or corporation owned.
    Salcha is a great run. Weekends it is busy, but if you have time during he week there is very little traffic. Like a lot of rivers, there are some tricky spots, but heck, if it were easy it wouldn't be fun.
    The Chena can be run from the mouth a long way up. People pass by it without boating it, but it is a very pretty river. You can put in as low as my house or up by Nordale Rd or even up at the flood control project. Lots of good bars to camp on, and the fishing can be pretty good.
    And Oz, I don't own any big rocks, just mud bars.

  12. #12
    Member OzAK's Avatar
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    Default Yeah, Yeah

    The only rock that I remember really well is the one that slowed me down enough (took a different channel coming back down, looked "cleaner" and more open at that moment) to give me a whack on my jaw from the top of the windshield frame that had me seeing stars. Who put it there is a given but the rat that moved it over in my way just before I got there is still a mystery. Sigh. I'll never get any stories with it sitting on the trailer. I'll go back to the Delta any day, just not quite so far up perhaps. Got almost to the falls and called it quits.
    As for other destinations I forgot, the Nenana offers some interesting possibilities in that it has everything you seek. The fishing is to be had in smaller tributaries, the Teklanika is an OK run, and depending on how far you feel like running upstream in the Nenana and where you put in, the scenery is good too. I'll agree with Rat on the Chena, although it's a mite shy on mountain scenery. However, the number and quality of camping spots, some outstanding rock formations, good fishing and multiple launch opportunities make it a could-do-worse proposition.
    There are others but most don't meet the park and go upstream criteria so well. All for now, Oz

  13. #13
    Member fishin_ak's Avatar
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    I have to agree with my fishin partner akshrop. Go to the village if you're going to try Minto flats. I also talked to some guys who recommend Manley and upriver to get into the pike. Haven't tried that route yet. I have heard too many horror stories about the condition of Murphy Dome Rd.. I think they few guys who tell you that road isn't bad are the same guys who say your rig will get vandalized in Minto. I towed my 27' camper into Minto without any problems, just take it easy and pay attention to the rough road signs. In most cases they're not kidding. Good fishin.

    Hey Shrop, we might have to start guarding our secrets at some point, there won't be any left for us to catch...
    Attached Images Attached Images

  14. #14
    Member fishin_ak's Avatar
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    Just for the record, shrops fish might look bigger but it's all camrea perspective.

  15. #15
    Member akshrop's Avatar
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    To further clarify the record, mine was bigger!

    Oh and I don't tell them about putting Tobasco on the bait, so how are they gonna catch pike like us???

  16. #16

    Default Yukon to Stevens Village

    Starting to lean towards this trip.

    Got a map that shows either Doyon or local native corps owns almost all the uplands in this stretch. I know the state owns everything below high water mark and thus those lands below high water mark are open to public for camping, etc...

    Anybody know if the parts of the river islands that are above the high water mark are Doyon/corp. or are they also state lands?

    Assume you can camp anywhere you want below high water mark in these parts...? And that you can sit in a boat and fish the tributary mouths or walk around below their high water marks also

    What stream gage level (nearby gage above the bridge) corresponds with typical water levels where there is still a lot of public land that is not underwater?
    Last edited by titobandito; 01-18-2009 at 00:19. Reason: mor info

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    Member f0zzy2's Avatar
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    Default Dall river below Stevens

    There are three camp sites that the native corp put in for public use on the Big Dall. There all on the right hand side as your going up the river. There pretty nice with a fire pit and out houses. If the water is high, stay to the left at the fork and you'll have no problems.

  18. #18

    Default Dall River ADFG Report

    http://alaska.fws.gov/asm/pdf/fisher...0-021final.pdf

    Here is an interesting historical report on the Dall River pike fishery.

    How far up the Dall are the campsites?

    Do you have to pay or reserve them?

  19. #19
    Member f0zzy2's Avatar
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    first camp is at the Y and the others about 5 miles past each other. I think it's just first come first serve. It's been about 5 years so I'm not sure what has changed.

  20. #20

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    There is a camping spot about 20 miles up the Dall river on the West bank, I used it for many years. The nice thing about it is that it is a lot closer to Patrick creek, which is where the pike fishing gets really good.

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