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Be carefull out there!!!

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  • Be carefull out there!!!

    My son and I were camped out on Granite creek between the campground and Six Mile this weekend and a fellow walked into camp looking very cold and wet, asking if I had a knife.

    He was rafting down Granite in his brand new Yak pack raft and got tangled up in a sweeper. Luckily he was swept free (under the tree I believe). The raft didn't fare so well as it was deflated and torn up, still underwater, stuck in the branches several feet down.

    He needed my knife to try and free his back pack which was attached to the raft under water. After a few tries, fighting the cold water and the current he gave up saving the pack and cut it open so he could retreive a dry bay with his car keys in it. We walked back to camp and I offered him a ride back to the campground, he said he needed to be alone to think and would walk back.

    He was a lucky guy, it makes me think about all the time I spend in the feild and how many times I have been lucky when things have gone wrong.

  • #2
    As our 2011 season of rafting begins this is a good post.
    Without being critical of this unfortunate (or fortunate to be alive still) soul, all of us need a "wake-up" call occasionally. His "wake-up" was a nean death experience. And hopefully just reading and thinking about the many river hazards encountered out there will be enough of a "wake-up" experience to keep many of us thinknig about safety and the hazards associated with the river sports many of us love.
    Imagine (It's easy if you try)
    …miles and miles of mountains…wide expanses of tundra...remote wild waters…
    (Whisper words of wisdom) Let It Be


    • #3

      Smaller streams are full of strainers and sweepers, which are constantly changing, and require good skills to safely run. A boater should be able to catch a small eddy which is makes scouting drops, as well as blind corners a more pleasant experience. Early in the seasoin ice ledges can extend over normal eddy lines, so keep that in mind. Most important, for the best safety, pick your way down the small Alaska streams using good technique, they are rarely suitable for a complete run and gun trip.


      • #4
        BE CAREFUL -- Well an update for anyone that may be interested --- I am down in Ferriday Louisiana with my family trying to figure out to stay or go - have had the chance to use my BAYLEE 1 self-bailer quite a bit. Just wanted to say she has worked like a queen. With out the skirt I have been able to get in and get out quick-- Really "funny water" with this flood- Highest ever here. Was 57' in 1927. We are at 61' now and going to 64' next week, any way I am happy with this new self-bailing boat. has helped me a lot.


        • #5
          There was also a sarcastic ad on craigslist the other day. A guy was selling an oar for $1400 after losing the whole cataraft in the ice on the chulitna, the oar was the only thing he was able to save.

          I nearly ran that river the other day, glad my bear hunting buddy got sick.
          My only gear sponsor is the salvation army - Dick Griffith


          • #6
            Am not running the river-- just checking the state of the levee-- this is my real life-- looking forward to getting back home to ALASKA- Family first-


            • #7
              Good luck with everything goeaux.
              My only gear sponsor is the salvation army - Dick Griffith


              • #8
                Originally posted by goeaux View Post
                Am not running the river-- just checking the state of the levee-- this is my real life-- looking forward to getting back home to ALASKA- Family first-
                Hope everything is okay down there. Take care!

                Michael Strahan
                Site Owner
                Alaska Hunt Consultant
                1 (406) 662-1791


                • #9
                  Here Here on everything said guys. The Gulkana is loaded with logs and trees and is best left alone until the water level drops and the trees are washed out or stuck high and dry. The bends and bars are 100% covered with large blocks of ice as well.

                  Nothing will kill a great float trip as quick as a nasty sweeper. Until you have had to deal with one they are just a bad story and after they become a nightmare!

                  See you on the water!


                  Gulkana River Raft Rentals
                  mile 127.5 of the Richardson


                  • #10
                    Good luck and be careful Goeaux
                    Afflicted by condition human


                    • #11
                      thanks so much for all the support, Have been a river man for the last 30 yrs. all over the world and never-never seen any thing as what is going on here, right now. The next few days will tell. They opened the locks south of here, which should save Baton Rouge and New Orleans, at the expense of the folks in central south Louisiana. Just pray this old, tired levee keeps on holding!!
                      Thanks again


                      • #12
                        Always carry your quick detachable river knife with you. Mines on the lifevest in the center right where I can grab it with either hand.

                        On small rivers, creeks, pull ashore and scout ahead before you run it if there is any chance of unseen problems. The bark beetle has killed millions of trees and sweepers could be anywhere.

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