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The Trip-Finder, January 1999
Paddling the Primrose

Outfitter Price Accommodations
Earth River Expeditions
$1,900 camping

The Route: A rugged eight-day river trip via paddle-raft and inflatable tandem sea kayak through the Class IV Upper and Lower Primrose Canyons and across Primrose, Rose, and Kusawa Lakes. Includes a helicopter porage around a spectacular 170-foot waterfall.

When to go: June-July

Difficulty: Difficult

Travel advisory: Because of its location just east of Alaska’s St. Elias Range, the Primrose area largely escapes the two usual north-country summer bummers: rain and bugs. Instead of deet, bring SPF 30.

High/low points:

  • Being towed at four knots across Primrose Lake by a rainbow-colored parafoil kite anchored to the bow of your sea kayak.
  • Discovering a fresh moose kill buried by a soon-to-return grizzly only 30 feet from your idyllic lakeside campsite.