Our Three River Raft and Flightsee trip is a great Alaska rafting trip for families, solo adventurers, couples and just about anyone! We meet at our headquarters at the old Motherlode Powerhouse in McCarthy (we provide transport here from Kennecott if needed), where we fit you with rubber boots, wetsuit jackets and raingear (if you don’t have your own) to keep you warm and dry on the river. We then drive 10 minutes to the Kennicott River, just half a mile from where it emerges from under the Kennicott Glacier. The first hour of trip the river is choppy and fast with Class II and III rapids and grey water heavy with glacial silt.
At the junction of the Kennicott and Nizina Rivers, the river triples in size and becomes more calm as we are carried west, traversing a wide glacial valley. We will stop for a delicious deli lunch along this stretch of the river, and while your guides are preparing the meal you will get a chance to wander along the flat river bar. We often find bear, moose and sometimes even wolf tracks and if we’re lucky we might even spot these animals in person. Your guides will share their knowledge of the local natural history, and the colorful selection of beautiful rocks could keep even a moderate rock-hound occupied for weeks!
After lunch we continue down the wide, braided Nizina River, which is moving surprisingly fast despite its relative calm. In less than an hour we enter the deep, rock walled Nizina River Canyon. In the canyon the giant river is forced to squeeze its way between 200ft limestone walls, causing waves and boils as it winds its way around each sharp turn. For an hour we will maneuver through a wondrous maze and we often make a rest stop on a narrow sand bars or hidden beach.
We meet our bush plane on a gravel bar at the junction of the Nizina and Chitina Rivers. After changing out of the river gear and back into your own shoes and clothes, you’ll retrace the route you just rafted, and then fly out over the Kennicott Glacier, getting a birds-eye view of the ice world below. You’ll fly over the Root Glacier, and experience from the air what you might have explored on the ground on our Glacier Hike. After a low fly-by of the Erie Mine and historic town of Kennecott, you’ll land at the McCarthy airstrip in plenty of time for a shower before dinner!