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Thread: Gulkana Float

  1. #1
    Member WaterWolf's Avatar
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    Jul 2006
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    Default Gulkana Float

    Looking to float the Gulkana in a couple of weeks, and was wondering if'n anyone made that trip yet and had any reports of concerns?

    Thanks in a advance,

  2. #2
    Member Buck Nelson's Avatar
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    Default Gulkana Float

    Just floated from Paxson Lake to Sourdough campground. We were one of the first boats through that stretch this year but there were numerous parties behind us. Water levels were good. Grayling fishing was excellent. Caught some rainbows but nothing huge. Packed our gear through the Canyon then I ran the raft through after carefully scouting it out and with some advice I got from snowcamoman (thanks!) on this forum. Another reminder that people have drowned on that stretch and things can go from fine to deadly in seconds. People should do the portage unless they really know what they are doing.

    It was a great trip. Have fun on your float!

  3. #3
    Member 6XLeech's Avatar
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    Nov 2006
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    Eagle River
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    Default From the archives...

    Gulkana (Lower then Upper) was our starting place, and a good one.
    Here are some threads I found informative from the archives:

    Good quick river description by Northwestalaska (post 3) and helpful comments re pros/cons of different watercraft by Jim Strutz (post 7):
    http://forums.outdoorsdirectory.com/...ad.php?t=10647

    Some comments about Kings/chinook in June:
    http://forums.outdoorsdirectory.com/...ad.php?t=33538

    This one has shuttle info:
    http://forums.outdoorsdirectory.com/...d.php?p=219698

    Good pictures of the canyon rapids:
    http://forums.outdoorsdirectory.com/...ad.php?t=32741

    Water levels and data source:
    http://forums.outdoorsdirectory.com/...d.php?p=302278

    The BLM/Gulkana website is excellent: http://www.blm.gov/ak/st/en/prog/sa/gulkana_nwr.html. Includes: special rules (firearms, waste, etc), floaters' guide (coordinates for campsites, historical info, land use tips) and more. Very helpful site.

    And a humorous yet informative AOD thread about waste-handling, heavy use of certain rivers. The Gulkana waste system is a model for heavy use streams featuring "Groovers" and a take-out dump station:
    http://forums.outdoorsdirectory.com/...ad.php?t=49613

    If you fly fish, two flies that have scored for me when fishing was slow:
    small Copper John for Grayling and soft-hackle nymphs for Rainbows.

    Have fun.

  4. #4
    Member WaterWolf's Avatar
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    Default

    Fellas thanks for the replies, and Leech thanks a ton for the archives, I'll be reading those for sure. I ain't look'n to go swimming any time before I need a bath.

  5. #5
    Member Michael's Avatar
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    Oct 2007
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    Anchorage / Glennallen
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    Default

    Just got back from a 4 day float. What a blast. Borrowed a friend cat a raft and went thru with 2 round boats. 8 in our party and we had a blast. Tons of Grayling all the way to the West Fork. We shared the river with several floaters but had all our camps to ourselves till the West Fork. What a nice group of people.

    This was my first time in a raft so I took a ride thru the canyon in one of the round boats, then hiked back and brought the cat thru. Yee Haw, what a blast.

  6. #6
    Moderator AKmud's Avatar
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    Oct 2005
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    Default

    I'm heading out Wednesday with a scout group. We will be doing the lower end - Sourdough to the hwy. Hopefully we will have good weather!!
    AKmud
    http://i78.photobucket.com/albums/j96/AKmud/213700RMK1-1.jpg


    The porcupine is a peacful animal yet God still thought it necessary to give him quills....

  7. #7
    Member BlueMoose's Avatar
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    Default Mud

    I hope you catch a break on the weather as well Just got back it cleared up nice around Paxon but still water coming in and out with each cell that gathers. We will be down there on Sunday having some fun maybe I will get to see that new boat your playing with.

  8. #8

    Default

    Just got off the Gulkana las Friday.

    Had a large youth group and it was COLD. Ice on the puddles in the a.m., and frost on the tents. Hail, a little snow , and LOTS OF RAIN, and you could see your breath at times during the day.

    fairly high water.

    So high the canyon was actauly a little simpler. just stay right, stay right, stay right, and then slip through the channel on the far right. water was high enough there was not really much manuvering required.

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