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Thread: Attigun River Float...

  1. #1
    Member calndux's Avatar
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    Default Attigun River Float...

    Hello,

    Has anyone ever floated the attigun river in late August? If so, please contact me. I need to know what kind of rapids, if any, are there and how larger the river is in late August. Also, I have two raft, and I needto decide which one ot take: I have a 18 cataraft and a 12 round boat. I would like to take my cataraft as it is set up for hunting, but I hear the river may be too narrow and/or skinny.

    Any information would be appreciated.

    Thanks.
    Advice from a River: Slow Down and Meander, Go with the Flow, Stay Current, Beauty is in the Journey...

  2. #2

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    Quote Originally Posted by calndux View Post
    Hello,

    Has anyone ever floated the attigun river in late August? If so, please contact me. I need to know what kind of rapids, if any, are there and how larger the river is in late August. Also, I have two raft, and I needto decide which one ot take: I have a 18 cataraft and a 12 round boat. I would like to take my cataraft as it is set up for hunting, but I hear the river may be too narrow and/or skinny.

    Any information would be appreciated.

    Thanks.
    I believe through Atigun gorge it gets to Class V rapids so I must be pretty intense. I wouldn't want to float it with a raft full of hunting/camping gear if I wasn't with something that had a BUNCH of whitewater experience.

  3. #3
    Member fnd1734's Avatar
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    Default Attigun

    I heard a story about some guys that tried it in canoes a few years back and it turn into a disaster. I was looking at it also, but the class V canyon is not for me.

  4. #4
    Moderator LuJon's Avatar
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    I have seen pics of the river and it was more of a "creek" and would likely be closer to a "trickle" that time of year in many areas. But like Lanche said once the water gets funneled into the gorge it can get pretty hairy. That would be a heck of a portage for either of your boats.

  5. #5

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    There is a thread over at PV about a recent death in that section. Larry provides some additional info in a write up of Atigun/Sag.

    http://www.pristineventures.com/cgi/...c,m=1248736746

  6. #6
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    Default

    I've asked the same thing in the past. Responses have not changed. I talked with a guy that happened to do the trip this year. His group is very experienced doing these trips and thrive on big water. He was not disappointed.
    Where the river crosses the road from the lake it is calm, serene, and peaceful looking. They said a short distance down it narrowed and got rocky. They noted not one but 2 aluminum boats piled into the rocks. Remnants of somebody that got themselves into a bind and could not get out.
    He also said there are 2 spots you have to drag out on. Not sure where they are. Lower down he said it was a lot of traversing to make any mileage on the river. Lots of big boulders to navigate around. I asked him if he would ever do the trip again. He said probably not.
    I know I am not near good enough to try it without a really experienced guide. Guess the lower Chena is where I'll stay for now.

  7. #7
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    Default Atigun River

    Floated the Atigun and Sag in August 2008. took a 14' cataraft down the river. the Atigun and Sag are very boney lots of rock and numerous drops spent as much time out of the boat as in lifting the raft up over rocks. the Atigun is non stop class 2, with one maybe two class 3 drops. At the bottom of the Atigun Gorge (N68 31.216 W149 05.551) the river takes one last right hand turn and there is a section that is un-runable this need to be scouted, we line the boots through this sction. The sag river has numerous class 2 rapids, but the big ugly Rapid on the Sagavanirktok River (N68 39.714 W148 59.830) is located near a large pointed hill that can be seen on river right. This is a good Class 4 stretch with large pourovers and numerous rock dodges where prompt river maneuverability/reading skills are a must. Was able to run or man handle (me in the river) all the rapid but the one at the bottom of the Atigun. Lots of work, and need to be comfortable in class 4 water. Hope this helps

  8. #8
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    Smile Atigun Gorge into Sag

    I'd go up and practice on upper Willow Guard Rail section to Shirley Town Bridge, Moose Creek above the Glen Hwy, or Granite Creek (Seward Hwy) into just first canyon of SixMileCreek at lower water.

    At High water the Atigun is swift, technical to a degree, and will have some holes plus sticky spots. At low waters (like possibly this season) you are looking at technical bouldering or busy creekin'... more-so congested/tighter than the garden sections or whitewater drops of something familiar like Lake Creek.

    Think upper Happy River character... but an Arctic landscape and geology.

    All those horror stories are novice to intermediate boaters, using inappropriate boats, or ill-prepared gear-wise/food-wise and not mentally/physically up for an Arctic wilderness whitewater float.

    Can be done in a 10' old-school Avon RedSeal bucket-bailer when you know what you are doing (back in the day some 20 years ago thought we were pioneering the run - lol)... perfect choice today is a 13'-14' Cat. You can take an 18' Cat through... but lightly loaded and jacked up on the inner crossbars for max lift/clearance straddling rocks to provide less back ferry with more aggressive downriver angles.

    There are no Class V sections at any water levels... all in all, prepare for a class II through sections of III-IV technical flow.

    The Sag is fun whitewater with pretty good sportfishing.

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