Hey all, thought I'd share a trip since I've been so inspired by all the other fantastic trip reports.
The pictures are taken by fellow instructors. This was a seminar for NOLS staff only, and was for some (myself included) just an introduction to whitewater boating in small crafts, and for others was a formal evaluation of their readiness to work packrafting courses in a professional capacity. See nols.edu for 30 day PR courses in Alaska.
I'm paddling a decked Alpacka Yukon Yak (cruiser deck) with the "big butt" stern, a 2011 model. A four piece Werner Sherpa was the paddle provided, 197cm. I've got everything in my backpack, inside a 60L sealline stormsack, and have all extraneous cordage tied up/hidden to minimize entrapment hazard. Kokotat dry pants and splash jacket, which is a system I'd abandon in favor of some other, more dry option were I to do it again in water this cold. Bearspray is kept handy outside of the pack.
Any other questions? The trip was 10ish days, on the Matanuska River and some tributaries. It splits the Chugach and Talkeetnas along the Glen Highway, and was not the original route we had planned on. The preferred float/hike was in flood due to high water after a banner snow year in coastal AK. I'd like to go check out the original route sometime soon, but in lower water, likely fall.<img src="/backpackinglight/user_uploads/1339786751_64438.jpg" alt="Main Fork" width="550" height="253">