Peggy and I flew in to the Upper Utukok in June and floated down in our Double Alpacka to Archimedes Ridge: great wildlife and pretty paddling. We then hiked back upstream to our cache at the strip and headed over the Brooks Range to float the Kugururok and Noatak Rivers to the village of Noatak where we caught a river boat back to Kotzebue.
This is a really neat trip and, of course, my video does it little justice. The National Petroleum Reserve Alaska is the wildest place in the USA and has the best off-trail hiking I have found in the state. Just be sure to get there between the snow and the mosquitoes, like the caribou.
Hig and Erin are planning a trip up there in the NPRA with toddler Katmai as part of a Ground Truth Trek on coal. Looking forward to what they find and relate.