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Thread: Early Season Rafting on the Gulkana

  1. #1

    Default Early Season Rafting on the Gulkana

    I am getting a few calls from folks who are interested in taking a May float trip on the Gulkana. I was down at one of my launch spots last night and saw a group of rafters putting in and it made me a little nervous watching them as they wrestled the rafts over 6 feet of ice slabs to reach the Gulkana! Some of the folks did not have any PFD on and they looked like they were taking a mid July float trip with very little cold water gear.

    Right now the Gulkana is doable from Sourdough down but... the water level is very high and it hides lots of trees that are just under the water line. I would not launch my rafts into this situation with out a real good reason, too many bad things can happen this time of the year. Please use caution and understand cold water kills you and fast! Sweepers are death traps and right now there are plenty of them.

    A wise rafter will give the river a solid week or even 2 to allow the water level to drop. Safety is always first guys!

    Good luck and i will see you on the water.


    Gulkana River Raft Rentals
    Mile 127.5 of the Richardson
    Rafts, Canoes and Camps

  2. #2
    New member Buck Nelson's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006


    Words of wisdom there. Not wearing PFDs, especially under those conditions, is really asking for trouble.

  3. #3
    Member AlaskaTrueAdventure's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Paradise (Alaska)


    Buck and GulkanaRafting, well said...continued, additional, wise words of wisdom and experience....not wearing PFDs under any Alaskan river conditions is asking for trouble.
    After all is said and done, not wearing a PFD is the leading cause of drowning deaths in Alaska every year.



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