Beartrap Canyon - Madison Dam To Route 84


Bear trap is a beautiful wilderness canyon with lots of a scenic miles and a few rapids. Most put in for the mostly dewatered double drop rapid. After a 1/4 mile water enters the river from a power station on river right and things get a little more padded. There are some II's, one with a nasty seive on river left. Whitehorse is the first named rapid and is the longest and most sustained of the rapids. Two holes wait at the top. The scouting trail is on the left but most will opt to read and run. When cliffs meet river level on the left scout/portage Kitchen sink on the right. Kitchen sink is a IV at typical flows and V at high flows (3000ish +). Finally green wave ends the major rapids with sneak down the right or a massive pourover boof off the green wave. Watch out for snakes. The bird watching in this canyon can be pretty good. Bald and Golden Eagles, osprey, mallards, wood ducks, pelicans etc.

Suggested river levels for paddling this section of the Madison River are between a bare minimum of 1,200cfs and a high of 3,000cfs. River conditions sourced from USGS 06038800, the Madison River At Kirby Ranch Nr Cameron Mt Remember only watercraft are permitted at Beartrap Canyon - Madison Dam to Route 84.

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Area Hydrology

Gauge Streamflow Stage
Madison River Ab Powerplant Nr Mcallister Mt
USGS 06040800
1,280 cfs 6.1 ft
Willow Creek Near Harrison Mt
USGS 06035000
2 cfs 0.9 ft
Gallatin River Near Gallatin Gateway Mt
USGS 06043500
479 cfs 1.6 ft
Madison River Bl Ennis Lake Nr Mcallister Mt
USGS 06041000
1,320 cfs 2.1 ft
Jefferson River Near Three Forks Mt
USGS 06036650
131 cfs 1.5 ft
Madison River Near West Yellowstone Mt
USGS 06037500
377 cfs 1.8 ft
Madison River Near Cameron Mt
USGS 06040000
1,280 cfs 2.5 ft
Ruby River Bl Reservoir Nr Alder Mt
USGS 06020600
239 cfs 3.2 ft
Missouri River At Toston Mt
USGS 06054500
2,170 cfs 3.5 ft
Hyalite C At Hyalite R S Nr Bozeman Mt
USGS 06050000
62 cfs 2.5 ft
Snotel Site Snowpack 24hr Change