Koyuk River

Koyuk, Alaska

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Originating in the central upland of NorthwestAlaska's Seward Peninsula, the Koyuk begins at an unnamed lake 140 miles northeast of Nome on the north side of the Bendeleben Mountains. The river flows for 150 miles, first in a generally easterly direction for 125 miles. Then, at the confluence with its East Fork, the river swings south, traversing tundra wetlands for 25 miles to the village of Koyuk on Norton Bay. The Koyuk drains about 2,000 square miles. The uppermost 20 miles of the river are within Bering Land Bridge National Momunent. Ridges and Mountains to the north, east, and south form a horseshoe-shaped ring around the upper and middle Koyuk and range from 2,000 to more than 3,000 feet in altitude. The Koyuk is a clear stream flowing across rolling tundra-covered hills and ridges, with land elevations along the river usually less than 50 feet except for occasional ridges rising more than 100 feet. Below Knowles Creek, willows, spruce, and birch appear along the river and the domes of Granite Mountain and the Bendeleben and Darby Mountains offer scenic vistas. From its lake of origin to Caviar Creek, the Koyuk drops an average of 40 feet per mile. Downstream from its confluence with Caviar Creek, the Koyuk drops 33 feet per mile. Here the river is about 30 feet wide and 1 to 2 feet deep.

Koyuk River Professional Review and Guide

"Originating in the central upland of NorthwestAlaska's Seward Peninsula, the Koyuk begins at an unnamed lake 140 miles northeast of Nome on the north side of the Bendeleben Mountains. The river flows for 150 miles, first in a generally easterly direction for 125 miles. Then, at the confluence with its East Fork, the river swings south, traversing tundra wetlands for 25 miles to the village of Koyuk on Norton Bay. The Koyuk drains about 2,000 square miles. The uppermost 20 miles of the river are within Bering Land Bridge National Momunent. Ridges and Mountains to the north, east, and south form a horseshoe-shaped ring around the upper and middle Koyuk and range from 2,000 to more than 3,000 feet in altitude.

The Koyuk is a clear stream flowing across rolling tundra-covered hills and ridges, with land elevations along the river usually less than 50 feet except for occasional ridges rising more than 100 feet. Below Knowles Creek, willows, spruce, and birch appear along the river and the domes of Granite Mountain and the Bendeleben and Darby Mountains offer scenic vistas. From its lake of origin to Caviar Creek, the Koyuk drops an average of 40 feet per mile. Downstream from its confluence with Caviar Creek, the Koyuk drops 33 feet per mile. Here the river is about 30 feet wide and 1 to 2 feet deep."

Activity Type: Whitewater Kayaking & Canoeing
Nearby City: Koyuk
Distance: 150
Duration: 7 days
Class: Class I-II
Season: Mid-to late May through early September
Additional Use: Boating
Local Contacts: Bering Land Bridge National Preserve (upper 20 miles); state; Bureau of Land Management, Anchorage; Koyuk Native Corporation and Bering Straits Native Corporation.
Driving Directions: Directions to Koyuk River

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May 2018