Clear Creek - Clear Creek of the Arkansas



This is another typical class V Colorado run that doesn't have a long season.  Look to run this at higher flows which typically happen during the snow melt seasons of April and May.  This stretch has lots of technical sections with mini drops, rocks and wood hazards.  You can scout good portions of this from the dirt road that parallels most of the run.

Most people consider this an excellent training grounds for aspiring creekboaters due to the class IV+/V- nature of the drops, and easy access in and out of the creek to the road.  There are 3 distinct gorges on this run.  The entire run should be carefully scouted for frequent occurences of wood.  Some of the worst incidents that have occurred on this creek have been related to wood strainers.  

The first gorge has a steep continuous entrance that ends in a couple ledges and a constriction out of the gorge.  When things go wrong here, they usual go wrong in the first half of the gorge where recovery becomes difficult.  A huge eddy exists on river right above the first gorge that is an excellent staging area.  At high water, this is the one of the only good eddies you'll find.  

The second gorge also has a nice setup eddy on river left.  A tight lead-in along a cliff wall on the river feeds into the crux, a ledge that provides a fun boof followed by a continuous runnout.  At higher flows, the ledge has a huge boil behind it and paddlers are better off running the wave/hole down the center.

The third gorge is rarely run.  Unless the flows are high, or you have your explorer's hat on, it's best to skip this section which is generally full of bad wood and always full of mank.  


anonymous, KSC
Class IV+ to V-
Current Flow 337.0 CFS
06-26-2019 08:30
Recommended Flow Minimum: 150.0
Average: 300.0
Maximum: 600.0
Typical Season Begins: April
Ends: May
Recommended Use Kayaking: Yes
Rafting: No
Canoeing: No
Packrafting: No
Fishing: Yes
Length 2.5 Mile(s)
Gradient 180.0 FPM

1st gorge

05-25-2013 -

Subject: Justin Payne, Syd Miller, Daniel Lundberg