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Monday, June 17, 2019

Seagull Creek to the Nisutlin

A couple of years ago, we had walked into Seagull creek and determined there wasn't enough water.
Then we walked out again.
However, the area intrigued us as a cheaper, less time intensive route to the Nisutlin and its fun whitewater.

We decided to walk in to the McConnell river, which is one mountain range over from Seagull creek, and flows into the Nisutlin just upstream from the rapids..
Well, we arrived in the Seagull creek valley, it was late, it was starting to pour rain, and damned if there wasn't enough water in Seagull creek.  Especially so after the first large tributary flows in from the West, just 3km down stream.
Access is super easy.  Drive up to the Ground Hit creek exploration road on the South Canol.  Drive up to the high pass just before the road/trail starts dropping down into Seagull creek.  Park here (unless you are very, very confident on your rigs ability to get you back up and out of the valley) and walk 4 km down to Seagull lakes, then follow the old trail down stream until you want to paddle.
Paddling the rapids of the Nisutlin require you to either:

  1. Fly into McNeil lake/Moss lake
  2. Walk in from the Ketza mine access road and then to TeBob creek (normal PR access)
The flight in is speedy for what you get, and walking into TeBob creek involves a long car shuttle.
This route, if you walk bushwhack back to the Canol up Rose river (4-5km, 1.5-2 hours), allows you to paddle into the Nisutlin on a super fun little river, hit the Nisutlins upper rapids (fun!) in a 4 day weekend.  It looks us 1 day down Seagull creek into the McConnell, then another day into the Nisutlin, through the rapids and down to Rose river, where we then bushwhacked back to our truck at Rose river bridge #1.  You could probably fit it all in to a 3 day weekend if you drove a lot of the shuttle at night.
Seagull creek is similar in nature to the Rose river with lots of boulder gardens.  Seagull creek is harder than the Rose though.  Water levels would be good until late June.  If the water looks good to go in the Rose, its probably fine on Seagull creek.
The McConnell still awaits, but given its volume where it meetss Seagull creek, the upper reaches seemed like they could be really bony.