A visit to the Kobuk Sand Dunes is the perfect way to extend your time in the wilderness after paddling the Noatak River with us. The contrast between the greens of the Noatak hills and the tawny sands of the dunes is striking, and will peak your interest as you travel between the two places that are so different and yet so near to each other.
Last updated: October 3, 2017
What follows is a general flow of events. Expect the unexpected and prepare to be flexible.
Your fellow paddlers are heading back to the hectic pace of life, but you are headed further west into America’s least visited National Park. The plane lands right in the dunes.
A full day to enjoy the dunes. Moose, wolves and fox all frequent the dunes as do a great number of birds. The sand constantly shifts and swirls. There are springs coming right out of the sand and great expanses where nothing seems to live. The hiking is soft in places but great distances can be covered if so inclined. Swim in the ponds, look for wolf dens, slide down the tallest dunes, or just stretch out your beach towel and parasol.
Mid-day we hear the hum of the propeller and seal our bags one last time. Then it is a one-hour flight down the Kobuk to the Arctic Coast and the village of Kotzebue. If you left a bag with us in Fairbanks, you will find it in Kotzebue. You can spend the night in Kotzebue or travel on your own to Anchorage or points south. (Weather Permitting)
Such a joy to spend days where time was meaningless. A wonderful adventure and I would like to return next year for a longer, more challenging trip.
You mentioned to me in an email that you have terrific guides - you do indeed. Dave is a superb guide. He is personable, knowledgeable about the Arctic, and has excellent group management skills. I appreciated the time he spent teaching me to read the map, which is not easy without trails. He allowed Adrian and me to hike at our own pace and he encouraged all of us to explore the area surrounding our campsites. I know the others would concur in my praise.
Transportation starting on the Noatak and ending in Kotzebue, food while in the wilderness, stoves, cooking & eating utensils, water filter, base camp tent, safety & repair gear and professional guide service.
Lodging, non-camp meals, personal clothing and gear, tent, photographic equipment. Gratuity for guide(s).
Kobuk Dunes tends to be dry and sunny, but in late August it can get cold at night. You gear from the Noatak will be appropriate for this portion of the trip and insects probably won’t be an issue.