Many hunters fantasize about hunting Alaska for moose, caribou or bear, but float hunting Alaska's wild rivers is the stuff dreams are made of. Drifting down a remote, wild river in Alaska is a thing that must be experienced first-hand to be appreciated.
Hello, my name is Michael Strahan and I am the author of "Float Hunting Alaska's Wild Rivers", the definitive guide to float hunting in Alaska. This 550-page book contains hundreds of pages on trip planning and preparation, equipment, how to choose the best raft for your float hunt, tips and techniques on hunting rivers for moose, caribou, black bear, brown / grizzly bear, wolf and more.
Alaska is, by far, the most expensive place to hunt in the United States. Our geographic isolation, combined with our limited road system and the resulting need to involve light aircraft on most hunts, results in high costs in just getting here. And then you may need specialized gear that can hold up to expedition-type experiences. It's not cheap.
We were cruising about 800 feet above the western reaches of the Susitna valley, boreal forest giving way to expanses of tundra and rock as the tributaries thinned to small veins of quicksilver on the ground below. Though I had flown with this outfit many times, this pilot was new and a bit too apprehensive for my liking. As we flew up the Chakachatna toward Merrill Pass, my concern escalated to fear as he frantically looked at his map and through the windscreen repeatedly, finally rotating the map.
What is a river? To some, it's a place to relax in the shade, cane pole in hand, hoping to catch a fish for dinner. Others see a river as a barrier to cross. Still others see it as something to be conquered, especially as spring flood waters rise. In Alaska, our rivers are our roads. Summer or winter, we use boats or snow machines to cruise hundreds of miles on our rivers in search of choice camping areas, fishing holes and hunting spots. By looking at a river as a road that traverses untamed wilderness, one can see that, in Alaska, rivers are the key to accessing remote areas.