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Upper Kenai Winter Conditions

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  • Upper Kenai Winter Conditions

    Thinking about floating the upper river next week on one man rafts, anyone by up there or driven by lately? Just wondering about the ice conditions and water level.
    thx!

  • #2
    Right now the web camera at Sportsmans boat launch (Russian River Ferry) looks packed with floating ice. I was thinking about doing the same thing, but I think i'll wait until we get some "warmer" weather to melt the river ice. Good luck.
    http://www.dot.state.ak.us/iways/roa...Id=12&viewId=6
    To bead or not to bead, that is the question... :confused:

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    • #3
      Lets do it

      Chris Stout, Chad and myself on different trips but about the same time last year did the Kenai ice float classic. I think we went March 30th not quite sure though. It was about 35 degrees, it was so nice to get out and about we didn't even notice the temperature. The river had just enough ripples to keep things interesting, it was a good time....
      Anyway, maybe this could turn into a springtime festival for boaters.
      I talked to Chris Saturday at the pool and this was mentioned, we are looking at April 1stish or so.

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      • #4
        Upper Kenai

        I was just down there a couple of weeks ago. There are ice shelves on both sides in many places, some bad enough that you would not be able to get out of the river. Also there were places that looked as if they might be jammed all the way across. I would urge caution.

        -Mike
        Michael Strahan
        Site Owner
        Alaska Hunt Consultant
        1 (907) 229-4501

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        • #5
          Do not try it right now. As dog stated the river is clogged big time at the ferry crossing. also got a report of ice jams down further around mile 57 corner and just past the bear braids. I usually try to hit it again around mid march untill it closes 1 may. I have had a couple of happy easters on the river and winter camping there. Just a bit to dicey for my taste with all the ice right now
          Grandkids, Making big tough guys hearts melt at first sight

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          • #6
            Mark went the weekend before.

            It WAS 35 degrees when Mark went, that's why I went as well. Then it dropped to 28 degrees and snowed 8 inches while I was sleeping in my tent. The day on the river started with a 20 knot upstream wind for the first two hours, then it was pretty nice. I ended up bailing and hitching out because we thought we could do the lake to Jims, but we ended up reverse shuttling to sportsmans instead because of the brutal conditions. Any way, I'm in.

            Chris

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            • #7
              "...because of the brutal conditions. Any way, I'm in."

              I had to laugh, Chris. That's the sign of a boater who is either serious about his sport, or just desperate for spring.

              I did it on the first of March once, and I know it has been done in every month, but usually only during warm(ish) spells. Same is said of Sixmile though, so perhaps there are more of those serious/desperate boaters around.

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              • #8
                I didn't even realize it..

                "...because of the brutal conditions. Any way, I'm in."

                Had I read this before I hit post I would have thought "short bus special"

                But yes. Both serious and desperate, been doing pool sessions like crazy and want to get out and play. Finally decided to use my snowmachine and that took some of the urgency out of the equation, but with these long sunny (although cold) days I want to get into the water and play.

                Chris

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                • #9
                  LOL Chris, I like your attitude!

                  Thanks for the replies, that's just what I was loking for. We are going to watch the weather through this weekend, and go take a look at it. A co-worker and myself might try it mid-week if its open and 25+ out.

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                  • #10
                    I wish it was open Rat. Im dying here to put the raft in the water and chase some bows. The ice clog at sportmans is pretty big right now. Nothing a few days of warmth cant was out though. It is not a solid freeze just more of alot of blocks jammed up. As soon as it does open up im there though
                    Grandkids, Making big tough guys hearts melt at first sight

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                    • #11
                      Open at sportsmans

                      Looking at the cam today. sportmans is open and water is flowing. not sure about below it though and I have a feeling there is an ice jam below it somewhere.
                      Grandkids, Making big tough guys hearts melt at first sight

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                      • #12
                        Kenai still iced over

                        Drove past on Friday afternoon (Feb 20). Still several places with bank to bank ice below Sportsman's -- I believe it will be a while before a channel clears even with some moderate temps.

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                        • #13
                          Saturday the 22nd

                          Ok water is flowing from the lake to sportsmans. Low though as usual. There is a nice drift around the bridge I worked for about 4 hours yesterday. Sportmans is flowing but BEWARE. The river locks up just downstream at guardrail corner. Also it is locked up tight around Jims landing. The ice shelf at sportsman is about a 4 foot drop off right now so launching is not the smart move right now. Bridge down to sportsmans can be done.
                          Grandkids, Making big tough guys hearts melt at first sight

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                          • #14
                            A group of us

                            are looking to run the upper section from the lake to the bridge or maybe to the Russian river April 4th. Talking to Chris and looking at his picture reminded me of my own foolish adventures. This will be fun with a few laughs.If your in the area join us.
                            Maybe we should make a rule for anyone who participates, all kayakers must do a roll or two, or three in the freezing water, and rafters must jump in etc.
                            Chris brought up the brutality, so there.:eek:

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                            • #15
                              10 degrees this morning, probably ice this morning but better late afternoon. Should be a great sunny Saturday. Not getting dark till 7:30.

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