John River moose hunt
Has anyone had any float hunt experiences on the John River they would care to share with me? I have been doing homework trying to pick a river for this fall for months and months now (hard to get time in the army) and after speaking with several on here as well as some of the air charters, I think I have decided on the John River. I was also looking at the Chandalar, but the pilot told me that it is hard to get in and out by plane as the water is likely skinny and can freeze up, stranding guys.
Any advice regarding the John would be very welcome, as I feel like I haven't done enough research on that river specifically. Gotta do a bit more homework to learn about that one before I'm good to go.
Did you get my e-mail? I have floated the John River - although several years ago.
As far as the Chandalar river goes, you can get into the middle fork of the Chandalar quite easily flying with Wright Air Service out of Fairbanks. Float down to the Chandalar river, it's close to a 100 mile float with some skinny spots but very doable. The later you go the better but weather can be unpredictable that time of year.
I've hunt John's river several times. Before the park from Hunt Fork down and after the park from Tangle Blue and from the Koyukuk end as well. What is it specifically that you'd like to know? It's been a few years since I've been there, but other than the amount of human traffic, friends tell me that things haven't changed much.
In general, when you're flying in, take note of where the sloughs and ponds are near the river, if you have a gps and can mark them on the way in all the better, otherwise use a map to keep track of where you are.
Get out of the boat! We hunted in boats, canoes, and rafts. The rafts were the worst. Unable to control them and always wet in the bottom. Our best hunts were out of 20' freighter canoes. Nimble and spacious. On the upper river there are some pretty good riffles that you want to be able to navigate. The river above Crevice Creek is gorgeous in September. Below CC the river is more meandering. You'll want a kicker to move through this area. Yours ears will be more important than your eyes some days...listen to the river around you.
Get out of your boat and check the beaches...look for prints. There are griz in the area. The locals talked of a big griz they called Grandma...we saw her tracks many times but never laid eyes on her. We didn't always get a moose, but we always got something. We never hunted far off the river as we never wanted to carry a moose very far.
This is the area of Bob Marshall and the old Hickel Highway, you'll see the remnants of that first push into the arctic. There is a lot of history in those mountains, it's fun to brush up on the area before you go. See if you can find Bob Marshall's book "Arctic Village".
Last edited by 257wby; 07-15-2010 at 10:04.
Reason: more info