RIVER: Trout Creek, WA

Take out bridge with gauge rock in bottom right of photo.

General Info:

This is a NW Class V classic that can be run in anywhere from 45 min to 2 hrs depending on water, put in and paddling group. It is a steep continuous run that has many pinning hazards and the possibility for wood. If you enjoy steep continuous ww that requires lots of technical moves this is the creek for you! There is some fun easy water at the start and finish of the run with a steep gorge in the middle. Timing is key with this run, as you need heavy rain or snow melt to get floatable water flows and need the road clear enough of snow to access the creek.

Water Levels:

This creek can be run from about 150-600 cfs. This is a wide range and the creek’s character changes quite a bit at the two extremes. The gauge for this run is a visual gauge, a boulder just up-stream from the take out bridge that has a “cup” in the up-stream side of it. Generally you can run the creek with water flowing into the cup all the way down to about 10″ below the cup.

Hazards:

River is full of undercuts, pin rocks and sieves. Also be aware that there can be wood in this creek and it is best to scout carefully after big storms and/or get good recent beta from other paddlers. Currently (4/26/12) the creek is free of major wood hazards and the island rapid can be “cleanly” run down the right side.

Put In:

There are a few places you can put on the creek, as the road (FR 43) generally follows the creek for the entire run. If you just want the meat of the run you can put on at the first major pull off (with tons of garbage and debris in the woods) on the left as you head up river on the road. This put in requires a small hike through the woods, basically down the hill straight to the creek. For a bit of a fun class II-III warmup before the meat you can put in at the FR 43 bridge, or as far up the road as the snow allows you to go.

Take Out:

The PCT trail crosses the creek with a small foot bridge and has a pull off along the road. This is all easily seen from the road and is a super easy takeout that gets you the best ww of the run. You can also link your Trout Creek run up with a high water run of the Upper Wind, which makes for a long, but fun, day of paddling.

Directions from Carson, WA:

Wind River Rd. North, Left on Hemlock Rd., Right on FR 43 (Just after Ranger Station and before bridge)

 Other Resources:

-For good maps check out American WW’s page on Trout Creek

-Great report and guide on OregonKayaking.net (great shots of the gauge rock)

-Nice full guide on OregonPaddling.com

Kim Russell enjoying one of the many quality boofs on Trout Creek

Trip Report 4/26/12:

Level was about 4″ below the cup, a lowish level for sure. I put on with Joe Stumpfel, Kim Russell and Jesse Becker about a mile upstream of the first put in, as the road was blocked by snow. We had a great run in the sun and I took the time to shoot lots of photos in the gorge with the major rapids. This creek is relatively continuous and steep, but lacks any single big drops in gradient. We all had a no portage run, with a few flips amongst the crew, but no major pins or issues. At this level there where a lot of pin hazards and boat abusing rocks. I also had run the creek the day before with the water just lapping at the cup, a much more padded out level. Same lines on all the rapids, but many of the boofs were cleaner and deflection rocks weren’t in play.

(Full Photo Gallery on Exploring Elements FB Page HERE)

Joe Stumpfel loving the low volume "East Coast" feel of the run.

Jesse Becker styling the airplane turn boof.

Jesse Becker making the rapid harder than it needed to be, and styling it!

Kim Russell airing it out on yet another quality boof.

Joe Stumpfel stomping the second boof at the double boof rapid, a hard move to get right.

Jesse Becker coming out of the double boof sequence.

Off-side boofs are so cool! Joe Stumpfel making it look easy.

Kim Russell droppin' in hot.

Kim Russell boofing big yet again:)

 

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