Rapid Rating


River Mileage

About Steelhead Falls

In a section anchored by narrow gorges, remarkable scenery, and mellow whitewater, the severity of Class V Steelhead Falls stands out. For context, every commercial rafting company portages this rapid at every flow. While the portage involves some precision boat lining, and unstable walking/climbing along the shore, it is much safer than running Steelhead. Eddy out well above the hole on the left and begin lining your empty boat. Groups should consider leaving behind any paddlers who have serious balance issues. The portage trail is not easy.

Steelhead falls has an incredibly retentive hole that if run incorrectly could result in a fatality. At medium-high water a top tier kayakers might decide to run it, but rafts are not designed to punch through consistently enough to make it worth trying. At low water, as seen in this video, the hole does lose some of its power but it could still result in a terrible swim. Best option is to portage.