Hell's Gate Canyon

This run stretches 23 miles from Bear Flats campground to the town of Gisela.  I counted 6 distinct gorges, but there are numerous mini-gorges, so it depends on how you count them.  Endless horizon lines provide a plethora of class IV drops with around a dozen larger rapids in the class V range.  The run is typically done in 2-3 days.  We ran it in 2 days with about 9 hours on the water the first day and 6.5 hours the second.  We had a group of 3, kept a brisk pace, and had one member who'd done the run before.  Unless you have a very health flow, be prepared for lots of mank on this run, but the payoff is numerous quality drops and stunning desert canyons that very few people have ever accessed.

Suggested river levels for paddling this section of the Tonto Creek are between a bare minimum of 300cfs and a high of 2,000cfs. River conditions sourced from USGS 09499000, the Tonto Creek Abv Gun Creek Remember only watercraft are permitted at Hell's Gate Canyon.

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Area Hydrology

Gauge Streamflow Stage
Verde R Blw Tangle Creek
USGS 09508500
503 cfs 7.9 ft
Verde River Near Camp Verde
USGS 09506000
284 cfs 4.8 ft
Sycamore Creek Near Fort Mcdowell
USGS 09510200
10 cfs 0.7 ft
Cherry Creek Near Globe
USGS 09497980
3 cfs 2.3 ft
Verde River Near Scottsdale
USGS 09511300
81 cfs 0.6 ft
Salt River Blw Stewart Mountain Dam
USGS 09502000
1,090 cfs 4.8 ft
Dry Beaver Creek Near Rimrock
USGS 09505350
1 cfs 2.0 ft
Wet Bottom Creek Near Childs
USGS 09508300
4 cfs 4.0 ft
Pinal Creek At Inspiration Dam
USGS 09498400
1 cfs 1.2 ft
Tonto Creek Abv Gun Creek
USGS 09499000
201 cfs 3.6 ft
Snotel Site Snowpack 24hr Change
Snowslide Canyon
7" -1"
Fort Valley
2" 1"

Outdoor Recreation

Campground Campsites Reservations Toilets Showers Elevation
Indian Point 54 2,188 ft
Bachelors Cove 100 2,133 ft
Third Crossing 10 5,140 ft
First Crossing 7 4,865 ft
Orange Peel 20 2,121 ft
Mills Cove 10 2,176 ft
Houston Mesa 30 5,039 ft
Water Wheel 20 4,967 ft
Cholla Bay 20 2,149 ft
Second Crossing 10 5,086 ft
Kehl Springs 8 7,457 ft
Flowing Springs 40 4,580 ft
Cholla 206 2,196 ft
Bermuda Flat None 2,143 ft
Ski Area Snowpack Air Temperature 5 Day Forecast
River Run Streamflow Length Class
Lower Salt 1090.0cfs 14.0 Mi I
Hell's Gate Canyon 201.0cfs 23.0 Mi V
Christopher Creek 656.0cfs 6.0 Mi V
Christopher Creek 656.0cfs 6.0 Mi V
Christopher Creek 656.0cfs 6.0 Mi V