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Tanana & Wood Rivers

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  • Tanana & Wood Rivers

    I am planning a moose hunt up the Wood River mid-September. I plan to launch at Nenana, run up the Tanana and into the Wood. I have heard that the mouth of the Wood river is wide and shallow with an ill-defined channel. Does anyone have any insights or suggestions before I head up there to scout it next week?

    I am running a 20' Anderson Bowrider with a 175 Sportjet. I have quite a bit of lake and ocean experience on prop-driven boats, but I am relatively new to the jet-propelled river running game.

    Thanks for your help.

  • #2
    The mouth really isn't that bad. I havn't been up it this year, but plan to come the season.

    How far you up are you planning on running?


    • #3
      I'm not really sure how far up we'll go. I have heard you can get as far as the Buttes without much trouble. I guess we'll go as far as we need to fill our tags...

      Any suggestions or things to look out for?


      • #4
        Originally posted by ddeshazo
        Any suggestions or things to look out for?
        Sand bars.. The mouth does offer a challenge for some boats but with yours it should not be a problem. Guys with bigger inboards are the ones that spend days stuck at the mouth. Last year you went in the channel on the left then in about 1/8 mile you crossed straight across to the right but it changes every year so it could be the opposite now. Once you get in past the mouth be sure and keep an eye on the water flow. There are spots where you will be looking around for moose not really paying attention to the river and what looks to be a fine place to drive will only be 1 inch deep but in silt it looks just fine if you are not looking at the flow(don't ask me how I know). Have a good trip and I hope you get a big one. Be sure to at least take along a come-along and a few hundred feet of rope just in-case...


        • #5
          Wow. Just got back from the Wood river yesterday. The mouth is indeed very shallow for about 1/2 - 3/4 mile. I tied my boat at the mouth and launched my Mokai (hard-shell kayak with 6hp jet) to investigate. There is a "channel" going up the left side for about 1/4 mile then cutting across to the right after that. It was about 6-10 inches deep for the first 1/2 mile, and the channel was only a dozen feet wide. I grounded out in the Mokai a couple of times, but it is easy to get a 150 pound kayak off a sandbar - you just get out of it! A 1500 pound boat would be another story. Once past the mouth it deepened nicely, and we were able to run all the way to the powerlines without any difficulty.

          A couple of guys camped at the mouth said that no one was getting in. They were waiting for the water to come up before they made a run at it in their Wooldridge.

          I suppose you can run up it if you have the cajones to try and the patience to spend a day or two getting out if you blow the approach. I decided to leave that challenge to a more experienced boater.

          I am making other plans for my moose hunt this year. Good luck to anyone who heads into the Wood.


          • #6
            Sounds like the channel is about in the same place that it was last year. Most of the rivers are high now due to all the rain, how long were they going to wait for high water? This is as good as it gets..


            • #7
              Lovin that MOKAI

              Lovin that MOKAI works so well for things just like that. Have you jumped logs yet? Wait till the ice comes it will break through 2-3 inch thick and get you out for the last trips. Then we suffer all winter with "Lacamokaiyedis" until spring when the ice is rotten then we get to be the first one out running on top of the ice.

              MOKAI up the creek with out a paddle

              Go paddleless in a MOKAI


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