Saturday, October 6, 2012

9/29/12 Packrafting Moose Creek

I woke up to the first snowfall of the year in Anchorage, which is much earlier than normal. None of us could figure out why we shouldn't packraft, even though we were somewhat hesitant at first. We continued as planned, and as we drove North the weather improved to a crisp sunny Autumn day. The Buffalo Mine Rd. deteriorated the further we drove from the Glenn Hwy. The put-in is at the end of the road; take a right before the gate. 

It took us 7.5 hours to finish what normally takes 2.5. The flooding from the prior week added plenty of channel-wide sweepers/strainers. We saw some wood hazards from the road, so we knew there was going to be a lot of scouting. Since we were unfamiliar with the creek we played it pretty safe, and scouted every blind corner. There were numerous small ledge drops of 2-3 feet and lots of class III waves. The further we floated, the more class II we encountered. There were eddies at least every few hundred feet. Watch out for extremely sharp rails just below the water's surface in a couple places. The Moose Creek gauge read 225 cfs for most of the day, and it was a fun level to float. This is a great intermediate creek. If you're comfortable on Glacier Creek (in Girdwood) above 800 cfs this might be one to check out.

 Shoving off.

 The crew!

 Steve in Tsadaka Canyon.

Another portage.

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