Alaska's longest arctic river, the Noatak meanders 425 miles across arctic Alaska, from the glaciers on Mt. Igikpak, to the Chukchi Sea. Along the river or up in the side valleys, we may find herds of caribou, muskoxen, wolves, and Dall sheep. Here in the arctic, the sun never sets all summer, so you can leave your watch behind, and fall into the timelessness that exists in such spaciousness.
No paddling experience is necessary. You'll learn quickly how to paddle our stable canoes. The river is generally Class I, with a few Class II rapids thrown in for excitement. We travel 80 to 135 miles on our 10-day trip; over 240 miles on our 14 day trip; longer trips can be arranged. To travel to full length of the river, we offer a custom 23-day trip for groups of 5 or more.
Day 1: We meet in Fairbanks, and fly north by scheduled commuter plane to Bettles, a small village north of the Arctic Circle. Here, we'll organize our gear and fly by bush floatplane north over the Brooks Range, a landscape of jagged peaks and serpentine rivers, crossing the Continental Divide and landing on the upper Noatak River. Includes: (B).
Day 2: We start down the river today, exploring an arctic geologic phenomenon - a pingo. Includes: (B), (L), (D).
Day 3: Paddling down the Noatak. Includes: (B), (L), (D).
Day 4: Layover day for hiking/ climbing. Includes: (B), (L), (D).
Day 5: Paddling down the river. Includes: (B), (L), (D).
Day 6: Layover day for hiking. Includes: (B), (L), (D).
Day 7: Paddling down the river. Includes: (B), (L), (D).
Day 8: Layover day for hiking, or more paddling today. Includes: (B), (L), (D).
Day 9: Paddle to our pick-up spot. We pack up the boats and gear, then take our last long hike in this vast wilderness. Perhaps we'll pick berries or fish for arctic char. Includes: (B), (L), (D).
Day 10: Pick-up by charter floatplane, and return to Bettles, then fly by scheduled commuter plane to Fairbanks. Fairwell dinner at local restaurant. Includes: (B), (L).
Day 11: Includes: (B), (L), (D).
Also see tour packages in:
USA Alaska Outdoor: Water Drifter Canoeing/Kayaking/Rafting Wildlife Viewing