Itinerary (Aug 7-19, 2023)
0-Aug 7 Hometown-Fairbanks
Leave Hometown and arrive in Fairbanks. Take local
taxis to hotel. After dinner, we'll have a brief but mandatory orientation session
at 6:00 PM at hotel. (Final determination of hotel will be mailed
out in trip addendum). Overnight in hotel or B & B..
Day 1-Aug 7: Fairbanks - Arctic Village - Marsh Fork of the Canning
At approximately 8:30 AM we will fly to Arctic Village
on a charter flight across sedge ponds, meandering rivers, and
tundra. Once in Arctic Village, we will transfer our gear to our
bush planes and fly over the Brooks Range to the Marsh Fork of the Canning
River. We'll land on a gravel bar along the river, unload our
planes and portage our gear about 1/4 mile to the river where we'll make camp. From above, the limitless expanse of the tundra's colors
all flow together, anonymous, barren, and concealing the subtle
beauty that will only be revealed when we walk on the land below.
Hours after landing, we will begin to gain a sense of the
serenity of this magical land and the teeming life that is beginning
to flourish around us. Our camp will be approximately twenty miles
north of the Arctic Divide.
we peer around us, we'll find that there is plenty of color to
be discovered. Lichens are splashed against the rocks and the soft ground surrounding us is filled with small plants (tundra) that are beginning to exuberantly show their fall colors.
2-11; Aug 8-Aug 18: Rafting and Hiking the Marsh Fork and Main Fork of the Canning
Since we have a tremendous amount of daylight each day, our schedule
will be leisurely and flexible. After paddling each day on this
swift river, we'll take extraordinary rambles in search for the
denizens of landscape the caribou, other Arctic mammals, birdlife,
and wildflowers. The scenery is spectacular and the river valley
provides countless possiblilites for hiking to the high ridges.
En route, we will have opportunities to fish for arctic char and
grayling (bring your fishing gear).
one of our goals is the observation and photographing of wildlife,
we will take advantage of our layover days and daylight
and saunter across the landscape to avail ourselves
of wildlife-viewing possibilities. We will not be governed by
our clocks, but by the patterns of the animals we choose to observe.
This trip is really designed so that we may behave as if we were
the Inuit, the people who have inhabited this area for thousands
of year. From our camp, we will wander off like hunter-gatherers and then return to the comforts of our nomadic structures.
Day 12-Aug 19: River Take-out on the Arctic Plain- Arctic Village - Fairbanks
We'll camp where we are going to get picked up by our bush planes and then either fly directly back to Fairbanks or to Arctic Village and then onto Fairbanks. We'll return to our hotel and go out on the town
to celebrate our successful outing in the Arctic. (No host dinner)
Day After Trip-Aug 20: Fairbanks to Hometown
Transfer to airport for flights home.
Safety is the most important factor in operating any
trip and our pilots will not attempt to fly us out if the weather
is either socked in or turbulent. We encourage you to spend an extra
day or two in Fairbanks in the event that our flights out of the
ANWR are delayed. We will provide a list of hotel
and B & B possiblities for your lodging in Fairbanks. We urge all participants to arrange their schedules
after the trip in such a fashion as to accommodate any delays that
might occur in flying out of the Refuge.
Approx: $6500 per person (7-8 participants) (Includes all internal flights)
Approx: $6850 per person (5-6 participants) (Includes all internal flights)
Small Group Surcharge: $350/person (5-6 participants)
Our trips are budgeted for a full or almost full sign-up. As you can well appreciate, it is much more costly to operate a trip with 5 or 6 passengers than with 7 or 8! In order to avoid canceling a trip, we prefer to charge a little more to cover our fixed costs if there is a low sign-up. We have found that our clients would rather contribute a bit more than see the trip canceled. We invoice you at the highest tier price (the smallest group size we can operate) until final payment is due. If the price drops due to an increase in group size before your trip departs, you will be refunded the difference. (See Booking Information Supplement).
*All ground and air transportation beginning and ending in
*All meals in camp beginning with dinner on Day 1 and ending with
lunch on Day 11
*ANWR user day permit and fees
COST DOES NOT INCLUDE:
*Airfare from hometown to Fairbanks, Alaska and return
*Accommodations in Fairbanks the night prior to the trip and at trip's end.
*Airport taxes (if any)
*Items of a personal nature such as alcoholic beverages, laundry, etc.
*Accident/baggage/trip cancellation insurance: $405/person.
*Alaska sport fishing license: Resident Annual Sport Fishing License, $24;
Nonresident sport fishing license: 7-day, $55; 14-day, $80.
State of Alaska Licensing Fees
*Gratuities to guides
*Delays: If the trip is delayed because of bad weather, cancelled or delayed flights or delays on other modes of transport, sickness or other situations for which James Henry River Journeys or its agents cannot make provisions, the cost of delays is not included.
*Any additional hotel nights due to inclement weather or changes in airline scheduling
staff is experienced in advising which flights are best for your
departure and we would be happy to pass that information onto you.
A completed Reservation Form including The Release
and Assumption of Risk and a $1000 deposit per person is required
to book space on the trip. A second deposit of $1200 is due four
months before departure. Final payment of land cost and airfare
is due 90 days before departure.
One may either fly to Fairbanks, take a train from
Anchorage, or drive. You are responsible for getting to Fairbanks.
Although James Henry River Journeys does not do air ticketing,
we can help facilitate your air and travel arrangements. More
detailed travel logistics are mailed out upon registration.
LODGING IN FAIRBANKS
We will send you a a recommended hotel/B&B to stay at prior and after the trip. Please contact our office and let us know when and how you
will be meeting us after your travel arrangements have been made.
The trip will be conducted by James Henry River Journeys
who has a special use permit to operate natural history and photographic,
river and walking trips in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.
James Henry River Journeys is an equal opportunity service provider.
James Henry River Journeys has been conducting trips in the Arctic
since 1977 and in British Columbia and Alaska since
1976. James Henry River Journeys is also a National Park Service Concessionaire in Glacier Bay Nat'l Park and Preserve. James Henry River Journeys has also been an outfitter for
the National Geographic Society in the Arctic.
The Canning River expedition will be led by James
Katz, director of James Henry River Journeys and his veteran crew.
James has been leading wilderness trips for 51 years and has been
leading trips to British Columbia and Alaska since 1974. He has
also outfitted trips for the National Geographic Society in the
Brooks Range and has been on assignment as a nature photographer
for the Geographic in Gates of the Arctic National Park and Preserve.
James was a photo instructor for UC Santa Cruz Extension and
UC Berkeley Extensions for 25 years.
THEMES AND INSTRUCTORS: Please
refer to our Expedition Schedule and to our Final Trip Addendum
for leader assignments. Please note that leaders are often lined
up for a specific trip one year in advance and sometimes we have
to make substitutions. Final Addendum is sent to trip participants
one month before departure.
WILDERNESS EXPERIENCE, CAMPING LOGISTICS,
QUALIFICATIONS, AND PERSONAL CHALLENGES
All trip members must be in excellent health and good
physical condition. The river rafting is mildly strenuous-strenuous. We are taking all paddleboats; usually three paddlers and a guide in each boat. The gear and food is put in the middle of the boat. Hiking
is optional. One can hike as hard as one likes on this trip.
While day hiking, we will be walking over sedge tussocks, gravel
bars, and perhaps crossing small streams. Individuals will need
only carry a light day pack while hiking. Since this trip is in one of the most remote wilderness areas in North America, the group will be entirely
self-sufficient. We will take all of our provisions with us from
guides, and trip leaders, we consider ourselves equal and active
participants willing to share our experience, knowledge, and skills.
Encountering the elements often brings about a sense of spiritual
and physical elation that draws people together. This shared rapture
is an integral part of the personal adventure. We welcome anyone
who is 16 years or older (although a very solid and fit 15 year-old
would do well) and wants to partake in the spirit of wilderness
living and travel.
have attempted to schedule our trip a little later in the season in order to avoid the higher density of rafting groups that go earlier in the year. By going later in the summer, we also avoid the high concentration of mosquito populations that proliferate in late June through July. We stand a terrific chance of observing a variety
of arctic animals as we travel downstream and while hiking on our layover
days. By traveling in the high Arctic, we have long periods of daylight and a flexible itinerary.
final itinerary will ultimately be determined by conditions as they
exist on the trip. Final determination of this itinerary is made
by the trip leader. Though in past years our Arctic trips have
ended exactly as scheduled, we urge you to leave your return plans
flexible by a few days in event of any unforeseen delays. In other
words, don't schedule your heaviest appointments for the day after
you are to return from Fairbanks. We could be delayed.
This ANWR trip has been planned
to coincide with reliable water levels with channels not blocked by aufeis, the clarity of the streambed, lack of mosquitoes, and fine fishing opportunities. It is also a delightful time to witness
the fall colors on the tundra.
The Arctic is essentially a desert
with regard to precipitation. There is seldom more than 6 inches
of precipitation for a year. Days tend to be clear and sunny,
with temperatures seldom falling below 50 degrees. However, all
participants must be prepared for wind, rain, and snow with temperatures
in the 30's and 40's and below freezing at night. In short, the climate is Arctic and participants
must be adequately equipped.
Although weight and volume are a consideration in packing
for any Brooks Range trip, you will be amazed at how gourmet
our meals are in such a remote environment. Known for our moveable
wilderness gourmet feasts, international camp cookery will fill
the whetted appetite. See Meals.
MEDICAL AND SAFETY INFORMATION
James Henry River Journeys will have a complete first-aid kit and carries a SAT phone for emergencies.
Good health and good physical condition are prerequisites
for this trip. Participants will be sent a medical history questionnaire to be signed by you and to be signed by your physician if you are 65 or older or have a medical condition that would require an examination and approval by your doctor prior to your departure. People who are not in good health or have serious chronic pre-existing medical conditions, could potentially create unfortunate situations by being present and are not encouraged to join this type of journey. When in doubt about one's ability, please consult with our office; if in doubt about your medical condition, please consult with your primary-care physician before signing up.
and Health details.
EQUIPMENT: WHAT JAMES HENRY RIVER JOURNEYS
We provide all river rafting equipment (life jackets,
paddles,dry bags, first aid), and commissary. See What
Equipment JHRJ Provides and what kind
of boats are utilized.
Wool clothing/and or fleece garments, completely waterproof
raingear, good hiking boots and above the calf rubber boots are
necessary for a truly enjoyable experience. Tents, sleeping bags,
pads, rain gear, rubber boots, and day packs are to be provided
by participants. We have Northface VE-25's
available on a rental basis to trip participants.
The location of the ANWR offers the visual aesthete
one of the most remarkable photographic experiences in the world.
During the course of our journey, there will be no shortage of available light. Light may be polarized at midday
and shadows are of surrealistic length. The light has a glassy,
dilute quality that bathes the land in a palette of soft pastels.
Objects on the landscape are being continually sidelit and backlit,
creating rich three-dimensional shapes. Shifting cloud patterns
and clouds roll by, creating dramatic lighting effects.
The possibilities of ground level photography are without equal;
blueberries, cranberries, dwarf birch, reindeer lichen, and the
endless array of multi-hued rocks resplendent with circular lichens
of orange and blue hues. If we are fortunate, we will have the
opportunity to stalk Dall sheep and caribou. We might also get
the opportunity to see and photograph Barren Land Grizzly, Arctic foxes, musk oxen,
and perhaps a wolf.
Fishing is very good at this time of year for Grayling
and Arctic Char.
Licenses are required.
(See Pre-departure supplement furnished upon enrollment).
CANCELLATIONS AND REFUNDS
(See Cancellations-Terms and
(See Insurance-Terms and Conditions)
©2011. All Rights Reserved. Revised. March, 2022.
James Henry River Journeys.
Photos by ©Tom Meckfessel: Clavey Paddlesports
To read more about our Special-Interest Trips on this river, go
Marsh Fork of the Canning Special Trips.
Return to Marsh Fork/Canning River Trip Profile.