Rapid Rating System
(I) Very Easy:
Waves small regular, passages clear, very little maneuvering:
Rapids of medium difficulty, some maneuvering
necessary; low ledges, slow rock gardens, medium regular waves.
Waves numerous, high irregular; rocks, strong eddies,
passages clear though narrow, expertise in maneuvering required,
inspection necessary the first time.
Long rapids, waves powerful, irregular; dangerous
rocks, boiling eddies, inspection usually necessary; powerful and
precise maneuvering required; maximum safety precautions necessary.
(V) Very Difficult:
Very large irregular waves, critical complex
maneuvering required; maximum safety precautions necessary. Risk to
boat and life; limits of controlled navigation.
Navigation severe, risk to life and boat; rarely, if
River Flow Levels
Below 900 cubic feet/second
Very marginal for rafts; small rafts and kayaks may be OK
down to 800 cfs or so; depends on skill level and knowledge of
900 - 1200 cfs
OK for Kayaks, smaller oar boats, and paddle boats. Not advised for
loaded oar boats (gear boats).
1200 - 2500 cfs
Good water levels for all rafts - a very technical and diffult run.
2500 - 2900 cfs
Getting pretty fast - still suitable for paddle boats.
Above 2900 cfs
Very significant and dangerous at this point! Water levels about
2900 cfs DEMAND expert experience and maneuvering ability for a
successful and safe river trip. Advised for very experienced oar
boats and kayakers only.