Recreational Boating Access Projects
Southcentral Projects

Talkeetna Boat Launch


The Talkeetna River and its tributaries provide access to numerous sport angling opportunities that are a short boat trip away from the town of Talkeetna. Good runs of king, silver, chum, and pink salmon, as well as Dolly Varden, rainbow trout, and Arctic grayling are available. The Talkeetna boat launch is located northeast of the town of Talkeetna, about 3,000 feet upstream of the confluence of the Talkeetna River with the Susitna River and the Chulitna River. The boat launch was originally constructed by the community and is the only public boat launch on the Talkeetna River. Over the years, as use at the site increased, it became apparent that the launch and parking areas were inadequate. The boat ramp became hazardous because it was in a state of disrepair and the lack of rest room facilities and garbage receptacles posed health concerns and decreased the aesthetic value of the site. Also, the undeveloped parking area resulted in degradation to surrounding vegetation and traffic congestion.

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Aerial view
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Parking area
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Boat ramp - View 1
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Boat ramp - View 2


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The objective of this project was to construct a new boat ramp, parking area, rest rooms and trash receptacles.


Surveying the actual location and securing a long-term lease with the Alaska Railroad (site landowner) was accomplished in 1994 and 1995. Project construction was initiated and completed during the 1996 season. The original single lane gravel boat launch was upgraded with pre-cast concrete planks installed from the normal water level of the river to a point 40 feet up the ramp. Parking was significantly improved with the addition of a 60-vehicle gravel parking lot. A vault toilet was installed, as was a dumpster pad and screen. A small bulletin board was constructed near the handicapped accessible toilet and road signs were posted. The sum of improvements has provided better traffic flow, more sanitary and pleasant use of the site, and easier maintenance. The Talkeetna River Boat Launch is an ADF&G-owned facility. A state contracted private concessionaire provides day-to-day operation and maintenance of the site. The concessionaire operates a small convenience/tackle store located at the entrance road to the facility and manages a private campground located adjacent to the ADF&G launch facility.