anybody out there know of a trail where you can put-in on the bruskana; from what i’ve been told you can catch the trail off the denali hwy about a mile before you reach the brushkana campground (coming from cantwell end) and that this puts you below the whitewater. and is it class I-II for the remainder of the float wherein you catch the nenana and take it back to the spot where you can take-out, right near the hwy. any truth to this? i guess what i’m getting at is where does the brushkana dump into the nenana? and how long of a float would this be? any info would be greatly appreciated.


I haven’t floated the Brushkana before because of some very high water when I arrived. There is an established trail that takes off from the campground at the outhouse that meets up with the Brushkana a ways down stream; maybe 1.5 miles? I didn’t follow the trail to the site of the old bridge so I don’t know for sure. There is a written description of it at the trailhead kiosk. It was a very boggy/muddy trail in places. There are also game trails lining the bank that are better although brushier walking.

This blog may assist you as well:


justin, thanks for the info. i did see that trail you’re speaking of last time i was out there. which is definitely an option, but the one i’m looking for puts you in below all of the whitewater. from what i’ve heard to float from the bridge near the campground to the nenana is approx 6mi, then 12mi on the nenana. where i’m looking to put in it’d be only about 2mi on the brushkana. i’m sure that i can find it if i look hard enough. i’d take that trail you mentioned, but will have my dog with me and would just assume miss the tricky stuff as it’ll just be she and i on the float. thanks for the info once again, the blog tells a good tale. thanks!



I floated the Brushkana from the bridge next to the campground to where it gets class 1. I honestly can’t remember how far that is (whether it was just before, or after Monahan dumps in). Although it was definitely a couple of miles before the Nenana at least.

Anyway, there was a really good ATV trail that takes you all the way back to the small plateau right above the campground if I remember right. It takes you back to the campground vicinity anyway. No bushwacking.

The other side of the ATV trail (where we got out of the river) was marked by the remains of an old bridge on either side of the river. The trail starts on river left and goes back to the campground from there. The trail braided some if I remember, but its pretty easy to find the right way.

You might also be able to walk game trails all the way down river from the campground…there is one trail that goes from the campground right along the river for quite a ways…maybe all the way past the class 2 stuff.

P.S. I drove past the Brushkana a couple of weeks ago and it looked low…on the low end of packraftability, but probably doable.

Ryan Hickel

I can’t add anything to the trail situation other than two things: I think any ATV trail in that area is going to be a bog-fest and be cognizant of private property in that area, especially some of the hunting/fishing camps.

Its been a few years since but if memory sort of serves me correctly, I don’t think it would be the worst hike/bushwhack in the world to just hike along the creek to a point you feel comfortable. I was doing that when I camped for a night a little bit in and was able to move around fine.
If its low, which it likely is now, you could probably even float it with a dog, the worst things are just butt-stopping rocks. Or maybe dog run alongside? Or just do the Nenana highway-to-highway section…

thanks for the replies. i had walked downriver a ways below the campground, maybe 200yds below the public use shelter (the same trail you’re speaking of ryan, one that runs along the left side if you’re looking downriver), the last time i was out there (this was back in june and it was ragin’) and am thinking that at low water i’d be able to continue on down that trail to find a suitable spot to put in. according to the blog which was provided to me earlier in this thread, it does in fact slow down considerably after the monohan. either way, it sounds like i have a handful of options. thanks again!