Forty Mile River

Class II-III
Looking over the Forty Mile River while taking a hike.

The Middle Fork of the Forty-Mile River offers a wilderness float experience with excellent opportunities for wildlife viewing, grayling fishing and gold panning. Along the way you will discover cabins, relics and ruins from Alaska's gold rush past. It is rated a class II(III) depending on rain fall and spring run-off.

Highlights of the Forty Mile include: Bald Eagle Rapids, The Chute, The Kink, The Falls, and Deadman's Riffle. The Kink was formed in 1898 when Danish prospectors blasted away a 100ft ridge to divert the river and check the then dried river bed for gold, which proved futile. Now the Kink has several drops ranging in heights over 3ft tall. It's seldom in condition to run and is advised to portage on it's right bank.

The put-in location is the airstrip located at Joseph. Typically we stage a vehicle at the Forty-Mile River bridge on the Taylor highway as the take-out point. If you are a having a good time and want to keep floating, you can float all the way to the Yukon River and down to Eagle.

Check out the BLM tips page for floating the Forty Mile.

Drop-Off Pick-Up Distance Time
Joseph Private vehicle, Taylor HWY or Eagle 88 Miles 5-8 Days