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Our trio was enjoying the whitewater rodeo of the river's upper half, where the average gradient sits at a very steep seventy-five feet per mile. My partners were two other Alaska adventure junkies from Anchorage: Agnes Stowe and Seth Holden. The last time we were together was a year ago on the gigantic alpine wall of the Mooses Tooth, getting pummeled by freezing spindrift. Here on the river, the weather was perfect for hypothermia; a steady drizzle hung in the air while the afternoon temperature soared into the low... forties. We were on the lookout for the second crux rapids where the Aniakchak drops eighty-three feet in one boulder-strewn mile. Our plan was to scout this section to gauge the danger to life and limb. We would play the conservative card; any injury out here would be a serious situation. Besides, in this weather, just going for a swim would be life threatening. You gotta love early July in the Aleutian Range.


  • Crux Rapids on the River
  • Packrafting the Aniakchak
  • Hidden Creek
  • Remoteness by the Numbers
  • Back to the Rapids
  • Wooly Worm and Wily Char
  • Sockeye Rocket
  • Winding Down

# WORDS: 3640
# PHOTOS: 15

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