Gates of the Arctic Fishing Adventure for Allan and Terry Craig

Gates of the Arctic Fishing Adventure for Allan and Terry Craig


July 30, 2020 - August 5, 2020


Gates of the Arctic National Park


$9,500/ person (party of 2)



July 30, 2020 - August 5, 2020


Gates of the Arctic National Park


$9,500/ person (party of 2)

Enjoy the wild landscape of the central Brooks Range in Gates of the Arctic National Park with us next summer. Camp by a deep blue lake, hike the tundra mountains, watch for arctic wildlife, explore ancient Eskimo sites, and enjoy fishing in the nation’s northernmost National Park. Then we have 3 days to search for Sheefish on the famed Kobuk River.


Gates of the Arctic is the “crown jewel” of America’s National Park system. With 19 million acres of sprawling and undeveloped wild land in the central Brooks Range, it is a wilderness like no other. With no constructed trails, no campgrounds, and no visitor services of any kind, Gates of the Arctic is the perfect place for wilderness exploration and solitude. One of our favorite places in the Park is near the continental divide on the shores of an enormous lake surrounded by mountains and tundra as far as the eye can see.

Camping at Amiloyak Lake is sublime. Views across the lake into the peaks of the Brooks Range change hour by hour with the light and the weather. Days will be spent hiking through the varied landscape. There are peaks to climb, glacial cirques to explore, and broad valleys to wander. Adventures abound.

One of our favorite routes follows the edge of the lake and up a side creek to the east. As we ascend, the valley narrows into a canyon, often full of animal sign. A caribou trail leads over a low pass from which we can survey the entire area, with broad valleys, small ice fields, clear creeks and the broad lake all surrounded by the rugged and rocky peaks. From the high point of the hike, we can make our way back to camp stopping at several archaeological sites along the way, marveling at the ingenuity and fortitude required to thrive in the Arctic hundreds of years ago.

Arctic Grayling, and landlocked Arctic Char are abundant in Amiloyak Lake and on the other side of the continental divide, just 2 miles away lies Agiak Lake where we have excellent chances of catching Lake Trout and maybe even Burbot.

The area is rich in history. There are several Inupiat Eskimo archaeological sites to examine a short walk from our camp and numerous stone fences once used to herd caribou into the lake.

We never know exactly what wildlife we may encounter on a trip, but caribou frequent the area in August, feeding on the rich green tundra in small bands. It is also a great place to watch bears grazing the flats or eating berries on the slopes. We may also see wolves, red fox, moose and a great variety of other furred and feathered creatures during our time in the mountains. The serendipity is part of what makes encountering wildlife so rewarding. A keen interest and keen eyes are certain to spot a great variety of wildlife.

After several days on the Arctic Divide, it’s off to the clear waters of the Kobuk River. Home to the enigmatic Sheefish (also sometimes called Inconnu), the largest member of the whitefish subfamily and found only in Northwest Alaska and adjacent Siberia. These delicious fish lurk in the deep waters of the Kobuk favoring a bit of cover on the outside bends in the river.

The floatplane will land right on the Kobuk River and will deposit you and your mobile camp on the bank. We’ll set up on the bank beneath the dark spruces, sandwiched between the wild roses and the gravel beach. From camp we can explore on foot and by boat. We won’t paddle terribly far seeing as we are not going to move camp, but the boat will allow us to cross the river and will extend the range of fishing spots.

Days will be spent climbing the ridge above camp to pick blueberries and working our way along shore to find the perfect fishing hole. With 2 full days to explore and enjoy this stretch of the Kobuk we will have a chance to savor its moods and to find the best fishing spots in the area. In addition to Sheefish, we’ve caught, Dollies, Grayling and Chum Salmon on this stretch of the Kobuk. Plus it is a lovely spot!

Last updated: November 25, 2020


What follows is a general flow of events. Expect the unexpected and prepare to be flexible.

July 29

Meet your guide(s) for a pre-trip meeting at Arctic Wild headquarters in Fairbanks at 4pm.

July 30

You’ll be picked up early at your hotel in Fairbanks and shuttled to the airport where we’ll catch a charter flight to the bush village of Bettles in the southern foothills of the Brooks Range. From there we’ll load our gear into a small float plane for the hour long flight across the mountains to the Arctic Divide. Once there we’ll set up a comfortable camp on the tundra next to the lake before heading out to explore.

July 31- August 1

Each day in the backcountry brings something different. We can take day hikes to explore the glacial cirques, nearby alpine lakes, or wander the high ridges. The next day we may stick closer to camp for fishing and tundra napping, or if feeling adventurous, may decide to spend another day hiking and exploring.

August 2

Weather permitting, we’ll say a final goodbye to Amiloyak Lake and the expensive tundra before boarding the float plane for the flight to the Kobuk.

August 3 and 4

Full days on the Kobuk to fish and hike and watch the river slide by. We’ll have a boat to shuttle across the river and our boots to walk the banks and search-out the best fishing holes.

August 5

Weather permitting, we hear the thrum of the Beaver’s big rotary engine. Once it pulls up to our beach we’ll load everything up again and wing east across the southern flank of Gates of the Arctic, arriving in Bettles mid-day. Then we catch the “mail plane” for a hour long flight back to Fairbanks arriving in the early evening.

I genuinely feel, having traveled in South America, Australia, and Africa to remote villages and lodges, huts etc. that Alaska was the most foreign I have ever felt. And I am glad to have experienced it.
One of my biggest impressions is that I am so so very glad we had Arctic Wild as our outfitters. Michael Wald and his team were terrific and well prepared. I can’t say enough about the attention to detail and the experience of them and especially our guide Nancy Pfeiffer. I talked with other guides and with other groups. After each conversation, (trust me, they were lengthy chats as we were on a gravel runway sitting on our packs…) I thought how lucky we were to be with Nancy and Arctic Wild.


- Linda, Washington, USA



Transportation beyond Fairbanks

Food while in the wilderness,

Stoves, cooking & eating utensils

Safety & repair gear and professional guide service

Rental equipment is available through Arctic Wild and is included



Non-camp meals

Personal clothing and gear, camera equipment per our equipment list

Fishing gear, and fishing license

Gratuity for guide


Temperatures vary from the 70’s to below freezing. Snow is possible; rain is likely. This is the peak of summer. It could be wonderfully warm or it could be cold and stormy. Likely it will be both.

There could be bugs, bring DEET and a headnet.


 Ordinary Wolves, Seth Kantner

Alaska Wilderness, Robert Marshall

Last Light Breaking, Nick Jans

Arctic Wild, Lois Crisler

More Alaska reading is available from our Bookstore

"The wilderness was spectacular, the leadership perfect."
"I am just finishing my tenth trip with you guys. As always, the trip was more than I expected and I had a great time. See you next year!"
"Of all outfitters with whom we have worked (and that is quite a number), you were by far the most organized and responsive."
"That feeling of wide open wonder, the possibilities for nearly limitless wandering, and the image of those proud caribou...that will stay with me a long time"
"Our guide was an encyclopedia on legs. He was always willing and ready to teach, to talk, to listen, to do another hike, or to lie low in camp if we were beat. He truly gave us the trip we wanted!"
client client client client client
Eileen - Canning River