Classified as a
river surfing location
is best paddle when discharge levels are
between 300.0 cfs to 2000.0 cfs
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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