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Difficulty II-III
Length 90 Miles
Gauge N/A
Flow Range
Reach Info Last Updated 06/20/2004 12:07 am

River Description

Kisaralik River Description

Coordinates Miles Land Mark Comments

N 60.20.093
W 159.24.252 0 Kisaralik Lake
The river is a small clear flowing stream as it leaves Kisaralik Lake. It flows through a tundra covered basin for the next 20 miles with shallow rocky riffles. The Kuskokwim mountains rise to 2700 feet above the river basin. Fishing in this section is slow but Dolly, Arctic Char, and Grayling can be picked up with egg patterns drifted under holding Salmon. DollyÂs and Lake Trout can be taken in the lake.

N 60.19.800
W 159.31.300 4 Gold Greek
Increased flow makes floating easier. Swift flow with rocky riffles to North Fork. Excellent fishing at the Confluence.

N 60.23.143
W 159.41.398 18 North Fork
Large pool, increases flow dramatically. Good camping here.

None available 22 Entering Kilbuck Mountains
Start of 20 miles of swift flow through rock gardens as river cuts through Kilbuck mountains. Some of these rapids require quick maneuvering. These rapids are mostly class II but some approach

N 60.21.777
W 159.56.392 24 Upper Falls
Class III then class IV 50 yards below. Scout on left and portage right. Nest 12 miles are class II. Rainbows start to show.

N 60.24.680
W 159.58.380 26 Quicksilver Creek
Large pool.

N 60.28.720
W 160.09.360 36 S-turn
Class III - take extreme right.

N 60.29.930
W 160.09.980 40 Golden Gate
The Golden Gate is class III but the next 40 miles are class I, watch for sweepers. Rainbow fishing below rapids excellent.

N 60.33.319
W 160.20.655 46 Quartz Creek
River leaves Kilbuck mountains and begins to braid. Rainbow fishing continues its excellence if water levels aren't to high. In mid to late August, Silvers begin to show in sloughs.

N 60.40.000
W 160.16.250 53 Clear Creek Usually not noticeable due to braids.

Not available 61 Nukluk Creek

N 60.46.429
W 160.39.901 69 Kasigluk Cutoff
This was a small channel that has increased in size. Keep Right! Possibly marked by surveyor tape.

Not available 75 Bear Camp
End of braids.

Not available 77 Transition to Silt and Sand Bars
Gentle meandering flow slows to flat water with silt bars. Some of the sand bars have spots that have no firmness and can catch you like quicksand.

N 60.51.200
W 161.15.300 105 Confluence
Kisaralik River/Kuskokuak Slough

Upper Falls

The increase in gradient, rock uplifting on the right bank, hawks and eagles on the left hills, and the converging ridges warn of the Upper Falls. The Upper Falls is two drops separated by a 50 yard pool. The first drop is a short class III that requires maneuvering. The Second drop deserves to be called a Falls, it is rated a class IV but it should be a class V due to its remoteness.

Scouting is best done from the left bank were a high bluff provides an excellent view if both drops. Stories are told of parties running both drops but wisdom tells one to portage. The right bank allows an easy portage. Rafts can be unloaded, slid over the rocks of the first drop, loaded, lined to the rock ledge of the second drop, unloaded, slid over the rock ledge, and packed for floating. This process takes 1 ½ hours. The portage on the left bank requires carrying everything up a hill and covers about ½ mile. There is not a good camp site at the Falls.

S-Turn (lower falls)

The S-Turn is dangerous since it is upon you before there is time to react. Entry into the S-Turn is a sharp left turn immediately flowed by a rock ledge that reaches out from the right bank beyond mid-stream. The river turns sharply right after the ledge and there is a short distance to a series of ledges that traverse the river. There is a good line on the extreme right. Scouting on the right bank just above the ledges is advised. Several parties have dumped their rafts here. Rated a class III.

Golden Gate

The Golden Gate is rated a class III but has always ran easily down the pipe.

Kisaralik Cutoffs

The rule of thumb when floating the Kisaralik is to go with the largest flow, however, in the lower river, ÂWHEN IN DOBT - GO RIGHTÂ Flow from the Kisaralik has found the Kasigluk river in several spots. The cutoff has increased its flow. Several boaters have found themselves on the Kasigluk wondering how to make connections with their pick-up boat.

This Kisaralik River description is second hand information and intended for planning purposes only and should not be used as a primary source of navigation. Fresh Water Adventures Inc. is not responsible for the accuracy of this information.

Should you find any of the above information inaccurate, or wish to contribute additional information please let us know so we can make the appropriate corrections and additions.

Rapid Descriptions


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Directions Description

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Matt Muir


Revision #Revision DateAuthorComment
1189819 06/20/04 n/a n/a