ABOUT KENAI RIVERDOG
Kenai Riverdog is a small company based out of Cooper Landing, Alaska.
We specialize in personalized rafting trips on the Upper Kenai River with smaller group sizes of up to six people.
Our goal is to make it feel like you are floating down the river with family while keeping you and your loved ones as safe and comfortable as possible.
A Brief History of Kenai Riverdog
Kenai Riverdog was started in 2014 as a way for owner, Kayce James, to bring her beloved dog Porter to work. In 2018, Porter retired from the river due to age and hearing loss and is living out his life still enjoying slow hikes along the beaches of Seward.
Meanwhile, it turns out that Kayce still enjoys showing friendly people the beauty of the Upper Kenai River, even without Porter by her side. In addition to Porter, Kayce is the single mother of a beautiful toddler named Eva. By supporting Kenai Riverdog, you are not only taking a relaxing scenic float in one of the most beautiful places on earth, but you are supporting a small business run by a single mother.
COVID-19 Safety Procedures
We offer trips for group sizes from 2-6 and will be trying to seat parties on the raft as safely as possible.
On the shuttle ride back, a disposable mask can be provided upon request. My shuttle driver and I are vaccinated but we are happy to wear a mask in the van if requested.
If multiple groups are on a trip and one of the groups would like masks worn on the van ride back, we ask that out of courtesy everyone else wears a mask as well.
What Trips Do We Offer?
12 Mile “Refuge Float”
April 30 to September 30
Minimum group size of 2
Maximum group size of 6
The last 5 miles of this trip go through the Kenai National Wildlife Refuge below the Russian River Ferry. There are often more fishermen in this section, so the people watching and the wildlife is often better, but the views are very similar to the 7-mile “Shorty”. If you’re looking for more time on the river, this is your trip.
IF and WHEN we do see bears, we typically see them in the last 5 miles of this float due to the salmon run.
Please keep in mind wildlife is hit or miss.
$85 per person
$75 per child under 12
$75 per senior 65+
**3% borough sales tax is added to every trip**
Minimum group size of 2 maximum group size of 6.
7 mile “Shorty”
April 30 to September 1
Minimum group size of 3
Maximum group size of six
The shorty is perfect for kids or adults who don’t want to sit for a long trip. It’s a beautiful 7-mile section of the river, starting at the beginning of the river at the Cooper Landing Bridge, and going 7 miles down to Sportsman’s Boat Launch. It takes approximately 1.5 hours (can be faster or slower depending on the water level and wind).
If you have mobility needs, reach out to see if we can meet your needs. We have two comfortable back seats, but sometimes we get mixed groups who both need those back seats, so just be aware that unless you have reached out in advance, we may not be able to accommodate your needs.
$65 per person
$55 per child under 12
$55 per senior 65+
**3% borough sales tax is added to every trip**
Minimum group size of 3 maximum group size of 6.
Due to limited staff and limited permits, weekend trips will be on a last-minute request only. I sincerely apologize for this, but as a small company run by one person, I realize the importance to my physical and mental health to not overwork myself. Rowing a raft can be very strenuous, and if I do not give myself breaks, I will be setting myself up for injury. Feel free to send me a text a day or two before the weekend that you desire, to see if I am able to take a trip. 907-362-3649
Thank you for understanding.
Commonly Asked Questions:
Who can go?
We will take ages 3 and up, but encourage you to choose “The Shorty” trip if you have younger children, as often the 12-mile float can be a little too long for younger children.
If your child requires a car seat for the shuttle back, please be sure to bring it when you show up to meet us.
Are there rapids?
The section of the river that we raft contains no more than Class 1 rapids. All you just have to do is sit back and take in the scenery while the guide rows.
For safety purposes, if you or someone in your party has health issues, please check with us ahead of time so we can talk about if the trip is right for you.
What should I bring?
If you can, please bring rain boots and durable rain gear (raincoat and pants) and layers layers layers! We can’t stress this enough.
Even if the weather looks nice, it can change before your trip is over. Sitting in the rain and wind on a raft can be miserable if you are not prepared for the weather.
If you need rain gear please let us know in advance what sizes of pants, jackets, and boots are, and we will make sure to bring some along.
There is a $5 fee for parking at the State Park boat ramp, so please bring $5 in change and be prepared to fill out an envelope with your license plate.
We will provide a few different “mom snacks” and bottled water, but if you have special dietary restrictions, please feel free to bring your own.
What’s the weather like?
The weather changes constantly! One day it can be sunny and warm, the next day it can be cold and windy.
We go in most weather conditions (YES, this means rain) unless it poses a risk to the safety of guides and customers.
If you are concerned about the weather, please wait to book, as we do not offer refunds for rain or cold weather (it is Alaska, after all).
Will we see wildlife?
Wildlife is completely hit or miss. Some summers we see bears every week.
Some summers we may see 5 bears a summer.
In the spring there are frequent moose sightings.
The most frequent wildlife that we see are bald eagles.
As mentioned above, the 12 Mile “Refuge Float” is your best bet to see wildlife but is no guarantee, as the final 5 miles are through a salmon run.
What Should I Wear?
Dress in layers! Bring a raincoat and pants (or send us a message with the sizes you need)!
It may seem sunny and perfect when you arrive, but the river tends to be breezy. Even if there isn’t a cloud in sight, a lot can change in 2-3 hours. We will have a dry bag that you can stuff extra clothes in, or you’re welcome to bring your own pack. It’s better to be prepared than cold and wet!
We highly recommend waterproof boots as well and can bring some if you don’t have any.
Whoever sits towards the front of the raft is more likely to get wet feet even on a dry day, due to some splashes from the few small rapids we go through.
What kind of raft will we be on?
Our raft is a little different from other companies. It is a 16’ cataraft with two pontoons and a metal floor. Behind the rower, there are two back seats that are often given to people with mobility needs or who need back support. In front of the rower is a bench seat that two people normally sit on.
In the front of the raft are wooden boards that we usually put the most adventurous people on so they can drape their feet off the front of the raft. Please be aware that unless you have reached out in advance for mobility needs, you may be seated in any of these spots, so dress accordingly (rubber boots are key for splashing).
The raft is a little smaller than the other company’s self-bailing rafts, but we only do groups of six, as opposed to their groups up to 12.
Where do we meet?
Directions: When coming from Anchorage, as you get into Cooper Landing, you will cross a large bridge. As soon as you cross the bridge, take the first right onto King Salmon Drive. Take the next right into the state park parking lot, and look for a silver Econoline van with a trailer on it. I should be at the van waiting with life vests and any additional rain gear or boots that you requested.
If coming from Soldotna or Homer, it’s the first left onto King Salmon Drive after Mile Marker 48. After turning left, take a right into the state park parking lot.
Cooper Landing Boat Launch
18787 Sterling Hwy
Cooper Landing, AK 99572
There is a $5 fee for parking in the State Park lot. You will have to put your plate number and a five-dollar bill in an envelope provided by the state when you arrive.
If your party cancels:
60 days or more before the trip, we give a full refund (except for booking program fees which are out of our control)
30 days to 59 days before the trip, you will receive a 75% refund.
15 days to 29 days before the trip, you will receive a 50% refund. Any cancellation 14 days or less, there will be no refund.
*Please take note that it is very rare for us to cancel trips due to weather. Alaska’s weather is always unpredictable, so try to dress for it. We will not refund trips due to rain. It is Alaska after all!
If you have a larger group, feel free to reach out, and we will refer you to another business or activity that can accommodate your group size.
A Note From Kayce & Porter
Hi friends, guests, and Riverdog family. Porter retired from the River in the fall of 2018.
At close to 15 years old, his eyesight, hearing, and overall health is slowly declining. To top things off, he also just had a (very expensive) surgery to remove a parathyroid tumor. It was in his best interest to step down so he can live out his days doing slow walks and sleeping.
Along with this change, I (Kayce) am now a mother of a beautifully exhausting toddler named Eva.
Although I am vaccinated, as the sole provider of care to my daughter, I will be taking safety precautions to protect myself, my daughter and my customers. If you have issues with the safety precautions, please choose another company, or do not go. The safety of my small family comes first, and there will be no exceptions to this.