Sunday, June 5, 2016

Birch Creek River Log

May 25- June 1, 2016

Put-in: Mile 94 Steese Highway, about 105 miles from Fairbanks.

Take-out: Mile 140 Steese Highway.

Distance: 106 river miles

River rating: a Class 1 river with many Class I-II riffles and four Class III rapids

Party: Garrett Jones and Brenda Murphy (canoe). Becky, Cameron and Skylar Baird (12-foot raft and packraft). Jennifer Wenrick, Andy Sterns, Salak Crowe and Olive (canoe). Kristen Rozell (inflatable kayak). Ned and Anna Rozell, Cora (canoe).

Trip summary: This large group ran upper Birch Creek's first 100 miles over the Memorial Day holiday and then some, with seven days on the river and seven campouts. Despite such a party size, there was always room on gravel bars for everyone to have plenty of space.

We put in on Eagle Creek (between 12-mile and Eagle Summits on the Steese Highway) at a BLM gravel lot also good for camping (and it has a nice outhouse, just like the takeout). It's the same spot a few of us have caught the Yukon Quest trail in February for a ski to Chena Hot Springs road.

The 10 miles of Eagle Creek to where it intersects the Harrington Fork of Birch Creek had plenty of water. The Bairds, both former river guides in Haines, never got the raft stuck. Eagle Creek is fun and splashy with lots of S-turns and many sweepers. Garrett removed a few of those for us.

There's not much room to maneuver in this section. We tipped the inflatable kayak and lost a paddle and dumped one of the canoes right before we camped, losing another paddle. If you found any paddles on Birch Creek . . .

The water from Harrington Fork made the river much bigger about 10 miles into the trip:

We all got to see this guy, who tolerated the whole flotilla:

We hit three sections of rapids (in quick succession) between Clum's Fork and Thomas Creek. The first showed up at a big bend to the left just after McLean Creek.

Garrett and Brenda run the first rapid in their 16-foot green canoe. They ran all the whitewater in great style. They are expert canoeists and wilderness guides.

Shotgun Rapids is the final frothy water. Cameron splashed through with his packraft. G and B slid through with grace. We portaged one canoe and ran the inflatable kayak and another through just the second part of the rapid after lining the boats through the upper part. All the girls got on Becky's raft:

Helpers stayed downstream with throw ropes that weren't needed by humans. But Cora jumped in behind Kristen. Becky and Garrett saw her get "Maytagged" in a hydraulic. She's a good swimmer so it was kind of funny. Her head is the black dot about to get pulled under for a good washin':

The water mellowed after Thomas Creek, but it featured enough sharp turns and wave trains to remain extremely fun and keep us awake. And, my favorite part, there were wolf tracks on every bar.

About 3/4 into the trip, the South Fork of Birch Creek enters river right. It dumps a lot of water in (looks like a fun packraft out from Big Windy Hot Springs 8 miles up). There is also magnificent camping here at a high bank sheltered with 200-year old spruce.

South Fork collides with Main Fork, Birch Creek

Skylar found a hammer. Most useful for tent stakes

Girls pitched the tent themselves! A new era.

The weather continued to fantastic up as we boated out of the hills and into the flats between the South Fork and the takeout.

Still batting 1.000

Drifting into the flats, crescent bar after crescent bar . . . And here the water slowed a bit, to a 3 mph drift when upriver it was 5 mph.

A few of the party saw black bears. We all saw moose. Singing birds were a constant pleasure, with Wilson's snipes, Swainson's thrushes, water thrushes, yellow warblers, kingfishers and other favorites. A regal trumpeter swan let us all float close.

The takeout was a mudpit we had marked on our GPS devices. It was extra buggy to help us pack up fast. 

We had a nice clean run on Birch Creek except for the lost paddles. It was a great wilderness float. The only man-sign was a few coals at obvious campsites and a blue bucket and few other pieces of plastic. And there were wolf tracks on every bar.


BJ said...

Hi; Interesting article, nice pictures. Just one correction: The Birch Creek begins at the confluence of Eagle and Ptarmigan Creeks, about ten miles upstream of the put-in at 94 mile Steese. So you actually floated Birch Creek right from the get go. There's no change at the Harrington Fork. It's pretty clear if you look at the USGS "inch to the mile" topo map, not so much on the 1:250k. Otherwise pretty good article, reminded me of my float trips there "back in the day." Jon

ned rozell said...

Thanks, Jon. My gps fooled me.

BJ said...

Your blogs been hijacked by a scammer. Was getting posts linked to this one to invest in oil and gas!
So have unsubscribed...To bad, but there's no shortage of a'holes in the world.

Dr Purva Pius said...

Hello Everybody,
My name is Mrs Sharon Sim. I live in Singapore and i am a happy woman today? and i told my self that any lender that rescue my family from our poor situation, i will refer any person that is looking for loan to him, he gave me happiness to me and my family, i was in need of a loan of S$250,000.00 to start my life all over as i am a single mother with 3 kids I met this honest and GOD fearing man loan lender that help me with a loan of S$250,000.00 SG. Dollar, he is a GOD fearing man, if you are in need of loan and you will pay back the loan please contact him tell him that is Mrs Sharon, that refer you to him. contact Dr Purva Pius,via email:( Thank you.


1. Name Of Applicant in Full:……..
2. Telephone Numbers:……….
3. Address and Location:…….
4. Amount in request………..
5. Repayment Period:………..
6. Purpose Of Loan………….
7. country…………………
8. phone…………………..
9. occupation………………
11.Monthly Income…………..

Email Kindly Contact:

urgent cash offer said...

Are you in need of a loan? Do you want to pay off your bills? Do you want to be financially stable? All you have to do is to contact us for more information on how to get started and get the loan you desire. This offer is open to all that will be able to repay back in due time. Note-that repayment time frame is negotiable and at interest rate of 3% just email us

Bdsfn Sfcompany said...


Are you a business man or woman? Are you in any financial stress? Or do you
need money to start your own business?

Do you have a low credit score, and you will find it difficult to get loans
from local banks and other financial institutions? solution to your
financial problem is Mrs. Pranchment Dura The Terms and Conditions are very simple
and considerate.You will never regret any thing in this loan transaction because i will
make you smile through out this transaction, because you where not born to be a loser

Email (Emaill Address:

Our services include the following:

* Personal Loans
* Debt consolidation loans
* Possibility
* Business Loans
* Education Loans
* Mortgage
*Refinancing Loans
* Home Loans
*Secure Loans
*Unsecured Loans

We offer loans at 1% interest rate

We offer loans to people in need of financial assistant with a low interest
rate of 1%. In order to get a loan with this company, you can tell the exact amount of
loan you need and the time in which you can pay back the loan.

NOTE: You are required to email us on:Email (Emaill Address:

Ocean Cash said...

Do you need Personal Loan?
Business Cash Loan?
Unsecured Loan
Fast and Simple Loan?
Quick Application Process?
Approvals within 24-72 Hours?
No Hidden Fees Loan?
Funding in less than 1 Week?
Get unsecured working capital?
Contact Us At
Phone number :+1-6474-864-724 (Call/Whats app)

*Commercial Loans.
*Personal Loans.
*Business Loans.
*Investments Loans.
*Development Loans.
*Acquisition Loans .
*Construction loans.
*Business Loans And many More:

Full Name:................
Loan Amount Needed:.
Purpose of loan:.......
Loan Duration:..
Marital status:....
Home Address:..
Mobile / Cell:....
Monthly Income:....

Contact Us At
Phone Number:+1-6474-864-724 (Call/Whats app)

Hamza Kumar said...

Assalamu Alaikum,
Are you in need of an urgent loan?
we offer worldwide loan to who in need of loan the business opportunity you having being looking for is here again. email us now at:
1) Full Name:
2) Gender:
3) Loan Amount Needed:.
4) Loan Duration:
5) Country:
6) Home Address:
7) Mobile Number:
8)Monthly Income:
)Which did you here about us.

Best Regards.

klain leo said...

Are you tired seeking Loan to finance your Business, has Bank stress be upon you all this years and you cannot get Loan to start up your Business, or are you financially embarrassed that you cannot pay up your Debt and Bills, Do you think of getting a Loan ? Are you seriously in need of an urgent loan? while don't you hurry now and Grab your Guaranteed and Secured Loan today at Nabil Al-Mubarak, we give out the best service ever to all our customer, and will are working towards an beyond our customers reach and expectation, as we Render out all kinds of Loans. to Loan seekers, Individuals, Cooperate Organization's, Companies, and so on .Contact us At :


First Name: ……………………..
Last Name: ………………………..
Contact Address: . …………….
State ……………………………….
Gender: ……………………………
Amount Needed: ……………….
Loan Terms & Duration:……….
Telephone: …………………………

Contact us At : Website;

max william said...

Do you need Finance?
Are you looking for Finance?
Are you looking for a money to enlarge your business?
We help individuals and companies to obtain loan for business
expanding and to setup a new business ranging any amount. Get a loan at affordable interest rate of 3%, Do you need this cash/loan for business and to clear your bills? Then send us an email now for more information contact us now via

Mr. Hussein Mohamed said...

Good day:
Do you need an urgent loan to solve your financial needs, we offer ranging from $ 5,000.00 to $ 10,000,000.00 loan Max, we are reliable, efficient, fast and dynamic, with 100% Guaranteed We also gives u credit to the (euro, pounds and dollars.) The interest rate applicable to all payday loans (3%), if you are interested get back to us via ( with the information below:

Your full name:
Amount of loan
Phone number:

Once we are in receipt of this information,You will be sent the company loan terms and condition immediately.Be assured that your loan application will be handled with privacy and in a professional manner and you will receive a prompt answer to your request.(
Best Regards,
Mr. Hussein Mohammed

Mr. Hussein Mohamed said...

Do You want to receive a credit to settle your financial problems You want to receive a credit for the implementation of your projects,undertake your activities, Construction of your house,Rental House or Apartment, Purchase House Etc Contact us now via Email