Alpine Canyon – Class II, III & IV
This guide outlines the main waypoints for the Alpine Canyon stretch of the Snake River, from West Table to Sheep Gulch.
Mile 0 – West Table Put In: River Right. Put In on river right at West Table for the most action in this section. This is the most popular put in for the section. If this ramp is crowded and you do not have a trailer, go up the road a short ways to East Table Put In where you’ll likely find it far less busy.
Mile 0.75 – Station Creek Campground: River Right. This campground offers two group campsites that can accomodate up to 40 people each, which makes it a good jumping off point if you’re planning a large group trip.
Mile 0.75 – Station Creek: Class II. Read-and-run rapid.
Mile 1.58 – Taco Access Point: River Right. On River Right, there is a large turn-out from which you can look downstream to the Taco Hole. This is also a Put-In
Mile 1.73 – Taco Hole Surf Wave: This surf wave has been washed out from a slide 🙁
Mile 1.9 – Double Draw: Class III. River bends to the left, fun waves on both right and left of this read-and-run rapid.
Mile 2.38 – Haircut: Class III. The Snake River sharply bends right, with the current pushing hard towards an undercut rock that you can just fit under at the right flows. Stay right to avoid the Haircut.
Mile 2.98 – Three Oar Deal: Class II. Usually a straightforward rapid, at high water, this Three Oar Deal forms one of the scariest holes on the river (some rate it Class V at these flows)
Mile 3.59 – Gauging Straits: River Right. Keep your eyes peeled for the river gauge station on river right. This is where the river steepens a bit, and there are some fun rapids to follow.
Mile 5.05 – Blind Canyon: Class II. Read-and-run rapid, just above Big Kahuna.
Mile 5.39 – Big Kahuna: Class III. Stay right for dry line, on the left side is the Big Kahuna wave, which goes at most flows.
Mile 5.39 – Kahuna Put In: River Right. Another Put-in on river right. This Put-In drops you straight into the most exciting part of this section, just below Big Kahuna
Mile 5.55 – Lunch Counter: Class III. Lunch Counter has a fun wave/hole at the top left, can be avoided by going right. Fun wave train down the middle of this rapid.
Mile 5.92 – Ropes Rapid: Class III. Long rapid with a beautiful cliff on river left. Wave at the top left of this rapid.
Mile 5.99 – Red Creek: River Right. Red Creek enters on river right. There is an excellent and challenging hike up this creek.
Mile 6.63 – Little Cottonwood Group Camp: River Right. This is a single group campsite that can accommodate up to 40 people.
Mile 6.75 – Champagne: Class III. Big rock island in the middle of the channel with a nasty strainer on the left. Easily avoid this feature by going left.
Mile 7.19 – Cottonwood Rapid: Class III. The river widens out, shallows and makes a gradual bend to the right. More waves on river right.
Mile 7.35 – Cottonwood Creek: River Right. Cottonwood Creek spills into the river here on river right.
Mile 7.61 – Last Chance Surf Wave: Final surf wave before takeout.
Mile 7.81 – Sheep Gulch Take Out: River Right. Take-out on river right. This is your final access point before Palisades Reservoir. Can be congested in the summer months.