Teklanika River - Downstream from Stampede Trail
Looking for information about the Tetlanika in fall. I would like to do a moose hunt putting in at the Stampede Trail and floating to Nenana, but I haven't been able to find too much info on it so far.
Completely depends where you put in, how you are getting your gear there, and what boat you will use.
The upper stream starts as an un-walled yet 'very steep' groove with tons of sharp irregular bouldering... this makes for difficult to reed & run route-finding --- minuscule eddys with little chance to get out, scout or rest --- and good chances of damaging even the smallest, toughest inflatables in about the worst of challenging circumstances. You could R2, paddle team, small cat, or packraft this stretch, however even the most experienced have 'likely' an 80% probability of damaging the inflatable and hiking out.
There are two more logical put-ins... first of which has technical whitewater of less gradient than the upper stream, but it does have more volume from two significant feeders out of the park. There is a dangerous pinched section with a crux/mid-current rock and a drop. While this is doable for boaters with a ton of experience (class IV+ in my opinion at certain flows) --- the real danger that could tip the scales to class V for certain is greater flow and not being able to stop beforehand then getting off-line on entry. Take a swim: there is high potential for body pinball, body pinning, and drowning. Much of the volume here goes through un-runnable cracks in&around the crux formation. Rescue from this type of entrapment would be horrifyingly problematic!
The next put in would eliminate any whitewater sections altogether... putting you on snakelike frog water (read as hardly moving flatwater) in a tiresome, featureless forest row (read as paddle for days without a change of view) to the bridge take out at Nenana.
Just note here::: My whitewater description is dead nuts on... so even the dare-devil day-trippers w/ empty boats beware... this is NOT a 9 outta 10 get 'er done no problem river. Years ago, I looked at this I felt that inflatables where simply not up to this task and neither were the very experienced guys I had in mind to try. None of us where good enough in the kayaks we had or had access to. A few reasons for this decision making: distances involved with no gear (except self rescue/safety gear) in the boat --- different and quick fluctuations with flows making it hard to predict on a trip having driving distance/time from Anchorage --- Boat pins on sharp rock, tough scouting conditions, with really bad entrapment hazards --- time, distances, and not enough help for freighting any multi-day gear/food for the trip to Nenana bridge.
I know exactly where you want to put in, that's about a 10-12 mile ride in on wheelers or a vehicle made for technical riding. The river there moves along at a pretty good clip and i've had a few hair raising experiences crossing it on a wheeer. I've also run a river boat about 1 hour or so up the Tek from Nenana and it is doable in a raft though I suspect water levels at that time of the year are fairly low which could make for an extended float. As per usual, this all depends on weather, which could make it worse or not as bad than what Brian has told you. There is also a fair amount of private land on the Tek so be careful where you hunt, i'd imagine folks there wouldn't take kindly to tresspassing.
pm him please
I know of that spot as well, and I'd rather not have it advertised on here if at all possible. Anyone considering that trail should know it's not easy, especially during a rainy year.
Nobody advertised anything, he asked for some info and we obliged without too much detail.
Shame on you
Shame on you John for not checking first.
Perhaps we can have a forum where everyone can list their "off limits" spots never to be discussed in the light of day!
If you want to keep it quiet you should probably have taken your own advice and sent a PM to John and Brian instead of posting it in the forum. I didn't even consider firing up Google Earth until you told him to keep it quiet. I did now. Your desire to keep it quiet does way more to interest people than their description of that peice of water. Hmmm, think about it.
Settle down BAR300
This trail is no secret. A freak'n movie was made about it.
Originally Posted by 1S1K
Precisely. I never would have given this spot a second thought, and will probably never go there, but I'll at least do some looking into it now.
Originally Posted by Milo
Not the river for this year!
Thanks for the info gentlemen. I was looking for a mellow road to road hunt to introduce some new hunters to float hunting. Sounds like the first part of the river downstream from the Stampede Trail is more than my ability, and that the trail to get to the other portion is beyond my hunting partners riding ability.
I am no stranger to low slow water - getting blown upriver on the lower Goodpaster in 02 and creeping along the Chatanika between the Elliot Hwy and 12 mile trail in 04 are pretty bad. At least on the Goodpaster there was a 57 incher in the raft - which helped to act like a sail and send us up river when we were not rowing, but a succesfull hunt makes a little drudgery palatable.