Last updated: March 28, 2017
What follows is a general flow of events. Expect the unexpected and prepare to be flexible.
Meet your guide(s) in Fairbanks for a pre-trip meeting at 4 pm.
Fly from Fairbanks 200 miles north, across the Yukon River to the frontier settlement of Bettles. From here we transfer to a smaller floatplane and fly west another 100 miles along the southern flanks of the Brooks Range Walker Lake. En route, watch for moose feeding in ponds and bears on the hillsides.
We spend a layover day here, settling into our surroundings, hiking to a sweeping view of the route ahead, exploring the lake, and fishing for lake trout, grayling and northern pike.
July 24 - 28
We’ll raft, hike and fish our way down the Kobuk. On each “moving day,” we’ll aim to make about 20 miles, roughly six hours of paddling. On our first paddling day we will need to negotiate significant rapids and may need to portage around the biggest one. After that we have a couple of Class III rapids and numerous smaller rapids. Once below the canyon the river mellows and the fishing gets even better! We will spend our two layover days at camps where the river swings closest to the mountains—for great hiking opportunities! There will be free time each and every day—after camp is pitched you’re free to do as you please, and we will stop often to fish promising looking holes.
Weather permitting our plane picks us up for a flight down the Kobuk River, to the village of Kotzebue where the trip ends.