Last updated: October 9, 2017
What follows is a general flow of events. Expect the unexpected and prepare to be flexible.
Meet in Fairbanks at 4 pm for a pre-trip meeting at the Arctic Wild World Headquarters.
Drive from Fairbanks south to Denali National Park where we meet the horses and wranglers. After a safety talk we head into the mountains and after a 1/2 day ride we make camp in the mountains.
July 11 - 13
Ride through the central Alaska Range covering about 8 miles each day.We have about 25 miles to cover. Most of the route is along river bottoms and gravel bars but there are some tight sections and a pass to negotiate where we may walk the horses. In addition to saddle time, there will be time to hike and relax each day. Cowboy camping is living the high-life: meals cooked on an open fire and items we would never be able bring on a backpacking trip.
We will inflate the rafts and launch into the current. The valley here is narrow and spectacular. When we spin the raft in the current we can see glacier capped peaks in all directions. The river is small and braided which will keep us busy steering and paddling to make it down safely.
July 15- 16
Two full days on the river. The Wood River grows with the addition of side creeks and becomes easier to negotiate. As we paddle north, the mountains grow smaller and the sky opens large overhead. As we get near the take-out we emerge into the Tanana Flats and can look back at the impressive peaks of the Alaska Range, with Denali to the west and the twin peaks of Deborah and Hayes to the east.
Pack-up and await the airplane. It is a short flight back to Fairbanks and we ought to arrive mid-afternoon.