Use the chart below to help schedule your travel. Below the chart, I’ve noted some additional items that need lengthier explanations.
At the “Briefing,” we will:
- Make introductions;
- Update you on conditions;
- Distribute breakfast & dinner rations, demo gear, and paper maps;
- Check over your gear, and weigh your full pack.
The guides normally arrive at the briefing location about an hour early to set up. If you have been instructed otherwise or if feel that you need a lot of help in checking your gear, you can arrive early as well, but please by no more than 30 minutes.
If you are able to drive to the meet-up location, be within at least three hours to avoid an absurd early-morning start.
If you do not live at altitude, consider arriving a day or two earlier necessary to acclimatize. Try to sleep at 8,000-ish feet.
For the June 14-15 groups, the briefing will be in Fairbanks the night before Day 1 (i.e. Day 0). We’ll schedule it as early in the day as possible, shortly after the last client arrives, ideally in late-afternoon so that we can possibly get some dinner together afterwards.
For the June 23-24 groups, the briefing will probably be in Bettles on Day 1. But if a guide can fly Bettles-to-Fairbanks the day before (immediately after being extracted from the first trip), the briefing will be in Fairbanks, where there are more services available if we need something last-minute.
On the last day of the trip, Day 7, we are scheduled to be picked up by a bush plane and to return to Bettles. We will probably overnight in Bettles, where we can take showers, camp, or stay in a bunkhouse.
If we return in time and if there are seats available on the regularly scheduled Bettles-to-Fairbanks flight (which leaves Bettles at around 10:30 AM), you can return to Fairbanks on Day 7. Don’t plan on it, and be aware that you’ll have to get a last-minute hotel room in Fairbanks. I’d prefer to keep the group together, unless there are compelling reasons for an early return.
On so-called Day 8, you will return to Fairbanks on a regularly scheduled Bettles-Fairbanks flight. It arrives in Fairbanks around 12:30 pm. You can fly home afterwards. Give yourself some cushion, and account for the 45 minutes you’ll need to collect your stuff, say goodbye, and taxi to the main terminal.