Packsaddle County Park To Mill City


One of the most popular boating trips in the state with opportunities throughout the year. Moderate flows provide a great training ground for those just learning the sport. When flows are lower kayakers flock to Spencer's Hole for park and play. At high flows this river is a fun ride for more experienced paddlers.Most of the rapids on this run are class II but with a variety of features that make it a great river for skill building and instruction. Once you pass under the bridge at Gates you are approaching Spencer's Hole. This is a fun rapid but as flows drop it becomes a very popular park and play spot providing dependable playboating opportunities through the summer and fall for paddlers from throughout the region.Soon after Spencer's you will come to Carnivore which is found in the left hand channel at an island. If you are looking to avoid it you can just take the route around the right side of the island.Continuing downstream there is some more good class II as you approach the town of Mill City. When you see the bridge come into view you are nearing the take-out. Mill City Falls is just upstream of the bridge and most scout it out before the run as it is easily visible from the take-out. You can take out on river right above the falls or line up for your run and take-out on river right downstream of the old railroad bridge.

Suggested river levels for paddling this section of the North Santiam River are between a bare minimum of 800cfs and a high of 15,000cfs. River conditions sourced from USGS 14181500, the North Santiam River At Niagara Remember only watercraft are permitted at Packsaddle County Park to Mill City.

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Whitewater Rapids

Obstacles on the river run
Spencer's Hole
Class III- to III+
False Spencer's
Class II+ to III-
Carnivore
Class III to III+
Mill City Falls
Class III to III+

Area Hydrology

Gauge Streamflow Stage
Cedar Creek At Springfield
USGS 14164700
8 cfs 1.7 ft
Mckenzie River Near Vida
USGS 14162500
2,580 cfs 1.4 ft
Little Sandy River Near Bull Run
USGS 14141500
94 cfs 2.4 ft
Fanno Creek At 56Th Ave
USGS 14206900
1 cfs 8.6 ft
Nate Creek Tributary Near Colton
USGS 14199704
1 cfs 1.8 ft
North Santiam River At Mehama
USGS 14183000
2,100 cfs 4.0 ft
Oak Grove Fork At Ripplebrook Campground
USGS 14209250
460 cfs 3.9 ft
Molalla River Near Canby
USGS 14200000
627 cfs 11.4 ft
Johnson Creek At Sycamore
USGS 14211500
9 cfs 1.4 ft
Butte Creek At Monitor
USGS 14201500
64 cfs 6.4 ft
Snotel Site Snowpack 24hr Change
Jump Off Joe
SNOTEL 552
15" -2"
Bear Grass
SNOTEL 1166
113" -3"
Peavine Ridge
SNOTEL 687
19" -2"
Santiam Jct.
SNOTEL 733
14" -4"
Little Meadows
SNOTEL 584
74" -3"
Holland Meadows
SNOTEL 529
32" -2"
Clackamas Lake
SNOTEL 398
22" -2"
Mud Ridge
SNOTEL 655
63" -2"
Mckenzie
SNOTEL 619
83" -2"
Hogg Pass
SNOTEL 526
45" -1"
North Fork
SNOTEL 666
56" -2"
South Fork Bull Run
SNOTEL 925
12" -2"
Daly Lake
SNOTEL 434
15" -1"
Roaring River
SNOTEL 719
65" -1"
Blazed Alder
SNOTEL 351
85" -4"
Marion Forks
SNOTEL 614
10" -1"