Cross Mountain Gorge


Cross Mountain Gorge is a fun run through a beautiful desert canyon in northeastern Colorado not far from Craig.  This run often attracts the attention of antsy Colorado and Utah boaters since it is one of the first decent sections in Colorado to start running in the early season, often as early as March.  At low water expect mostly easy class II and III with a couple rapids in the IV- range and a stretch of flatwater on ingress and egress to the gorge.  At high water, the run is big water class V with a downright impressive hole at the Osterizer rapid.  Under 3000 cfs, the run is still manageable, but expect some big water class IV with a few juicier rapids at the upper end of that range.

Suggested river levels for paddling this section of the Yampa River are between a bare minimum of 300cfs and a high of 13,000cfs. River conditions sourced from USGS 09244490, the Yampa River Above Elkhead Creek Near Hayden Remember only watercraft are permitted at Cross Mountain Gorge.

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Area Hydrology

Gauge Streamflow Stage
Little Snake River Near Lily
USGS 09260000
450 cfs 2.1 ft
White River Below Boise Creek
USGS 09306290
733 cfs 3.5 ft
Piceance Creek Bl Ryan Gulch
USGS 09306200
18 cfs 4.3 ft
Yampa River Near Maybell
USGS 09251000
1,450 cfs 3.6 ft
White River Below North Elk Creek Near Buford
USGS 09304115
552 cfs 2.7 ft
Yellow Creek Near White River
USGS 09306255
22 cfs 6.0 ft
Piceance Creek At White River
USGS 09306222
7 cfs 1.7 ft
White River Near Meeker
USGS 09304500
489 cfs 2.9 ft
Yampa River At Deerlodge Park
USGS 09260050
2,180 cfs 4.6 ft
Corral Gulch Near Rangely
USGS 09306242
0 cfs 1.1 ft
Snotel Site Snowpack 24hr Change