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Whitewater Trips in & around the Valley

Disclaimer: this information serves as a general guide only. boaters should always evaluate their own ability and assess water levels, existing and new hazards before attempting any of these runs.

2007 WWC's held at Taco Hole Great Level at 6,700cfs

Gros Ventre River Slide Lake to the Park Boundary

Autumn on the Gros
Ventre River -
spectacular views
and fun paddling

Season Runoff - May to late July
Class III+/IV- @ 0-4ft. IV above 4ft.
Gauge Slide Lake Outlet or Zenith
Length 3 miles
Shuttle 3 miles - easy to run or bike.
Distance from Rendezvous River Sports to the take-out: 19 miles

Description: Flowing from the calm waters of Slide Lake the Gros Ventre River tumbles down to the valley floor through debris deposited from the Gros Ventre Slide. This geologically young section of river has beautiful scenery and is full of sharp rocks. At lower levels it offers great technical Class III boulder dodging and eddy hopping. When the water is high it offers stomping big water, Class IV boating. At levels of four feet and above good eddies are hard to come by - hang on and enjoy the ride. View the river on the drive up from a paved turn out about a mile before the put-in.

Directions: Drive north from Jackson on Hwy 191/89. Shortly after you cross the Gros Ventre River, turn right at the junction towards Kelly. Follow this road northeast past the Gros Ventre Campground and the town of Kelly where the road turns left. Drive north another mile and turn right on a paved road toward Kelly Warm Springs and Atherton Creek campground. Follow this road east about two miles until you reach the Gros Ventre River at the Forest/Park Boundary. This is the take-out. Continue up river two and a half miles to Taylor Ranch Road Follow this dirt road to the river and put-in. Please be considerate of landowners. Do not block any drives or cross private land.

Hoback River Granite Creek to the Snake River

Hoback River run-off

Season April to August
Class II+/III- at lower water III at high water
Gauge None
Length 12 miles (shorter & longer runs possible)
Shuttle 12 miles – not easy to find rides
Distance from Rendezvous River Sports to the take-out: 13 miles

Description: The Hoback River flows alongside Hwy 191 through beautiful Hoback Canyon. It has sections of swift moving flat water as well as many rapids with plentiful eddies. There are also good surf waves and play spots. Paddlers should be wary of fallen trees and pinned logs, particularly when floating under several small bridges that span the river. For a shorter run, start at Stinking Springs or No Name Campground. For a longer trip put-in at Kozy Campground or Bondurant.

Directions: Drive South from Jackson on Hwy 89/191. At Hoback Jct. slow down, veer right and take your first left BEFORE crossing the Snake River. Follow this road past Hoback River Resort to the river. This is the take-out. It is also possible to paddle into the Snake River and take-out at Astoria (See South Park to Astoria). To reach the put-in, return to the highway and turn right. Head southeast on Hwy 191 about 12 miles until you reach the Granite Creek Road. Turn left and park at the confluence. Put-in on Granite Creek.

Granite Creek Granite Falls to the Hoback River

Season Runoff - May to July
Class III-
Gauge None
Length 4.5 miles
Shuttle 4.5 miles - OK to bike or drive two cars.
Distance from Rendezvous River Sports to the take-out: 25 miles

Description: Granite Creek is a small mountain stream that runs fast and cold during high water. Below Granite Falls the creek meanders though wildflowers meadows with constant views of snow capped mountains. Then the creek picks up speed, offering excellent eddy hopping. Kayakers should be careful to stay upright, as the creek is shallow. For a unique day trip, run Granite Creek to the Hoback, then the Hoback into the Snake River taking out at Astoria.

Directions: Follow directions for the Hoback River to reach the take-out on Granite Creek Road. To reach the put-in, follow the signs on Granite Creek Road until you reach Granite Falls. This is a sight in itself. Begin comfortably below the falls. To shorten the run and eliminate some flat water put-in two miles below Granite Falls.

Snake River South Park to Astoria Hot Springs

Season All year
Class II (very strong currents exist during high water)
Gauge At Swinging Bridge or Alpine
Length 9 miles
Shuttle 9 miles – easy to find rides during the summer
Distance from Rendezvous River Sports to the put-in: seven miles

Description: This stretch of river is part of the famous Pole, Pedal, Paddle race. While most of this run is not whitewater, it is a great place for entry level boaters to practice their skills. The river is deep, wide and forgiving, yet the eddy lines are powerful. At flows above 12,000 cfs at Alpine inexperienced boaters should take-out above Hoback. During high water the section below Hoback offers incredible play-boating. Eddy lines abound for stern squirts, enders and mystery moves. This section also offers prime surfing at Kings Wave. Paddlers wishing a short and excellent play run should put-in at Hoback.

Directions: To reach the put-in drive seven miles south of Jackson on Hwy 89/191. Turn right before crossing the Snake River at South Park. This is the first bridge south of town; it is a hard right turn. To start at Hoback see Hoback River, take-out. To reach the take-out at Astoria, continue south on 89/191. Veer right at Hoback Junction, staying on Hwy 89. Turn left before the bridge at Astoria Hot Springs.

2007 WWC at Taco

Snake River West Table to Sheep Gulch

Surfing on Lunch Counter at 11,500cfs

Season March to November
Class III (Sections of Class IV at high water)
Gauge Alpine
Length 8 miles
Shuttle 8 miles - easy to find rides during the summer
Distance from Rendezvous River Sports to the put-in: 26 miles

Description: This is the Alpine Canyon section of the Snake. No matter what the water level, there is always something to surf on this stretch. At prime flows (6-12,000 cfs) world class surfing and hole riding are found at Taco Hole and Lunch Counter Rapid. At high flows (13-40,000) many of the usual surf waves flatten out but some huge features form. Boaters should be wary of floating debris and killer holes like Three Oar Deal. Check out the river map at the put-in.

Directions: Drive south of Jackson on Hwy 191/89, veer right on Hwy 89 at Hoback Junction and drive 12.5 miles to West Table Creek boat access. Kayakers should use the small boat put-in, immediately downstream of the public boat ramp. The take-out is eight miles downstream at Sheep Gulch river access. Kayakers should use the small boat take-out immediately downstream of the boat ramps. This is a popular run which can be quite crowded during midsummer. Please be considerate of other floaters particularly at river access points.

Greys River Squaw Creek to Bridge Campground

Season April to November
Class III/IV @ 2-4ft. IV/V- @ 4-7ft.
Gauge At Bridge Campground
Length 2 miles
Shuttle 2 miles – easy to run or bike.
Distance from Rendezvous River Sports to the take-out: 40 miles

Description: At lower flows the Greys runs green and there are hundreds of eddies. This river gets progressively harder both as you travel downstream, and at high water levels. There are three distinct fairly technical rapids along with other spots to boulder hop and play. If you don't like the first rapid, get out before the second. Subsequently, if you don't like the second get out above Snaggletooth. This drop is easily scouted from the road. There are many routes through this boulder strewn rapid. During high water the entire run turns into a raging brown torrent with scarcely a rock to be seen. Boaters should beware of potential log jams throughout and a nasty mid-channel hole as you near the take-out.

Directions: Drive south of Jackson on Hwy 191/89, veer right at Hoback Junction on Hwy 89 and drive twenty-three miles to Alpine Junction. Turn left and cross the Snake River. Then turn left onto Greys River Road. This road soon turns to dirt. The first bridge you get to is at Bridge Campground. This is the take-out. Continue up Greys River Road and scout Snaggletooth along the way. This should always be scouted as new log jams often form. In two miles you will reach Squaw Creek Campground. Deep snow may limit access in early spring. Note: There is a little bit more whitewater upstream both on the Greys and Little Greys Rivers.

2007 Deb Martin Slalom Race every September

Teton River Highway 33 to Felt Power Plant

Jacob Glissmeyer Runs the Boulder Dam
on the Teton River

Season April to October
Class IV-V
Gauge Driggs and St. Anthony
Length 7 miles
Shuttle Approximately 14 miles. Drive two cars.
Distance from Rendezvous River Sports to the put-in: 45 miles

Description: The Teton River Canyon lies hidden amidst rolling potato fields. At most flows the river offers technical Class IV whitewater with one Class V drop at Boulder Dam. This jumble of rocks is easy to notice and is scouted or portaged on the left. At high flows the Teton is a wild roller coaster ride. There is always the chance of log jams on this river. The river completely flattens out near the Felt Power Plant and its diversion dam. The dam can be run at favorable water levels. The suggested take-out is above the dam as it is easy to follow the trail up and out of the canyon. For a longer run continue on to France Boat Ramp (see Bitch Creek take-out). If you do this, a long portage of the entire power plant diversion is suggested.

Directions: Drive west of Jackson on Wyoming Hwy 22 over Teton Pass into Victor, Idaho. Drive straight north through Victor on what will now be Idaho Hwy 33. Follow 33 through Driggs and Tetonia. After leaving Tetonia the highway bends west. Follow it four miles to the river. To reach the take-out, return east on Hwy 33. In Two and a half miles turn left on Hwy 32 and head north towards Ashton. In three miles the highway crosses Badger Creek; a short distance further is Power Plant Road. Turn left and follow this rolling gravel road past several barns and houses. Please be courteous and drive slowly as you will cross private land. Everyone is at risk of losing this access point if visiting boaters infuriate the land owners. Follow the road until it ends at the Felt Power Plant.

Bitch Creek Highway 32 Bridge to France Boat Ramp

Season Runoff - May to July
Class III/IV(V)
Gauge On the old bridge at the put-in (hopefully it is above 3 ft.)
Length 13 miles
Shuttle 12 miles. Drive two cars.
Distance from Rendezvous River Sports to the put-in: 49 miles

Description: Bitch Creek flows through a beautiful basalt canyon, a striking contrast to the potato fields at the top. A full day should be allotted for this run. At medium flows Bitch Creek offers mostly Class III/IV boulder dodging with blind corners and the constant danger of log jams. There are two Class V rapids, Driscoll's Drop and Roscoe's Rock. These are both easy to scout or portage. After the confluence with the Teton the canyon opens up. There are five small rapids and mostly very flat water until the take-out on river right (after the second set of power lines cross the river). This run is not recommended at low water. If it appears bony at the put-in, it will be throughout the run. At high water things get fairly continuous and there are always new logs moving downstream.

Directions: To reach the put-in follow directions to the take-out of Teton River but do not turn left on Power Plant Road. Instead continue north on Hwy 32 until you reach a bridge. The put-in is on the south side of the bridge. Please be considerate. This is private land. (There is no sign for Bitch Creek but there is a Fremont County sign at the bridge.) To reach the take-out, cross the creek and continue north on 32. Shortly after passing a big Pillsbury grain silo the road begins to curve right and go up a hill. Turn left on the gravel road before the hill. Drive west until the road forks; stay left. Follow this fork down into the canyon and over the crumbling boat ramp that serviced the old reservoir. Follow the double track a short way down to the river. This last part can be tricky if wet.

Note: For current water levels on any of these runs check out the river report at or the Snake River flow phone 1-800-658-5771.

More Whitewater

There are many whitewater runs in the area not detailed here. Near Ashton, Idaho there are several Class III runs on both the Falls River and the Henry's Fork. The Blackfoot River near Idaho Falls and the Bear River near Soda Springs, ID both have excellent Class IV/V canyons. These rivers are all well described in Grant Amaral's Idaho-The Whitewater State.

In the mountains surrounding Jackson Hole we have several Class V creeks which go off during high water. If you are ready for fearsome action talk to us about Blackrock Creek, Upper South Buffalo, Warm Springs Creek Canyon or the Middle Fork of the Popo Agie.

Following the irrefutable proposal by the AWA, Yellowstone National Park should open to kayaking. The Yellowstone, Lamar, Lewis and Gardiner Rivers all offer excellent whitewater from Class III-VI.

Further to the north lie the massive Beartooth Mountains. The Beartooth’s boast some of the world’s best whitewater. Including the legendary Box Canyon of the Clark's Fork, the East Rosebud and the incomparable Pots of the Stillwater.

For first hand information about the incredible whitewater in Jackson Hole and the Greater Yellowstone Region call, email or come see the experts at Rendezvous River Sports.

River Tours In Jackson Hole

Snake River Pacific Creek to Deadman's Bar

Season May to October
Class I+
Permit Yes
Gauge Jackson Lk. Release + Flow of Pacific Creek & Buffalo
Length 11 miles
Shuttle 10 miles. Drive two cars.
Distance from Rendezvous River Sports to the take-out: 24 miles

Description: Below Pacific Creek the river flows further from the road. It also picks up speed and becomes more braided. This is an incredibly scenic stretch with numerous opportunities to see wildlife. Caution is necessary as there are often snags and log jams. Touring kayaks, canoes, rafts and dorys all float this stretch.

Directions: To reach the take-out drive north out of Jackson on Hwy 191/89. If you need a permit or information, stop in Moose. Continue north on 191/89 until you reach the left-hand turn to Deadman's Bar. Follow the dirt road down to the river. Walk to the riverbank and make a mental note of the take-out as it can be easily missed. To reach the put-in, return to Hwy 191/89 and continue north to Moran Junction. Turn left and enter the park. Follow the signs to Pacific Creek boat access.

Note: All boating in Grand Teton National Park - including the Snake River from Jackson Lake to Wilson, Jackson Lake, Jenny Lake, String and Leigh Lakes - requires a boat permit and an entrance fee. Permits and information concerning new and existing river hazards are obtainable at the Moose Visitor Center.

Snake River Jackson Lake Dam to Pacific Creek

A Kids Group on Pritchard - West table Section

Season April to November
Class I
Permit Yes
Gauge Jackson Lake Release
Length 4.5 miles
Shuttle 4.5 miles. OK to hitch or drive two cars.
Distance from Rendezvous River Sports to the put-in: 37 miles

Description: This is a beautiful run well suited for touring kayaks, canoes, rafts and dorys. The river meanders out of Jackson Lake, framed by the towering Grand Tetons. Many postcard photos have been taken of this section. Caution must be taken to avoid snags or log jams.

Directions: Drive north from Jackson on Hwy 191/89. After 12 miles you will reach Moose Junction, turn left. Drive across the Snake River and stop at the visitor center if you need a permit. Turn right out of the visitor center and enter Grand Teton National Park. Follow the park road north 24 miles until you reach Jackson Lake Dam. The put-in is several hundred feet below the dam. To reach the take-out, continue northeast to Jackson Lake Junction. Turn left and drive three miles to the signed Pacific Creek boat access.

Snake River Moose to Wilson Bridge

Season March to November
Class I+
Permit Yes
Gauge Jackson Lk. release + Pacific Creek, Buffalo Fk.
Length 14 miles
Shuttle 19 miles. Drive two cars.
Distance from Rendezvous River Sports to the take-out: 5 miles

Description: From the put-in at Moose Visitor Center the fast-flowing river soon becomes very braided. As it leaves the National Park a system of dikes has been built to protect the valley from floods. It is still very scenic and there is plenty of wildlife. Caution must be exercised due to the constant potential for snags and log jams. Kayaks, canoes, rafts and dorys all float this stretch.

Directions: To reach the take-out drive west out of Jackson on Hwy 22. In five miles you will cross the Wilson Bridge. Just beyond it turn right on Wyoming 390 towards Teton Village. Take the first right and follow a gravel road east to the river. To reach the put-in, continue north on Wyoming 390. After Teton Village the highway ends. Follow the road nine miles to Moose. Turn right and then left into the Moose Visitor Center and boat ramp. Vehicles with trailers must return to town on Hwy 22 and then drive north on 191/89 to Moose.

Snake River Wilson Bridge to South Park Bridge

Season March to November
Class I+
Permit No
Gauge Jackson Lk. release + Pacific Creek, Buffalo Fk.
Length 13 miles
Shuttle 12 miles. Drive two cars.
Distance from Rendezvous River Sports to the put-in: 5 miles

Description: From Wilson the Snake River meanders down valley, contained by dikes on both sides. This stretch flows primarily through undeveloped areas and offers wonderful views of the Teton and Snake River Ranges. Wildlife viewing is good as well. Use caution to avoid snags or log jams. Kayaks, canoes, rafts and dorys all float this section.

Directions: To reach the put-in drive west from Jackson on Hwy 22. After crossing the river turn right on Wyoming 390, then take the first right. The take-out is reached by driving south from Jackson on Hwy 191/89 for seven miles. The first bridge you reach is the South Park Bridge; turn hard right before crossing the river. Early and late season boaters may find river access difficult.

Lake Tours in Grand Teton National Park

Jackson Lake

Jackson Lake lies entirely in Grand Teton National Park. The Tetons rise immediately from the west shore. There are several different access points and numerous excellent camping spots. A park boat permit is required for all craft and a backcountry permit is required for overnight camping. Camping is permitted in designated sites only. The lake is open to motorized travel. Mid-summer, paddlers will likely encounter many large and small motorboats.

Great access point that will help you avoid crowds is at Spalding Bay. Other accesses are at Leeks Marina, Colter Bay and Signal Mountain. To reach Spalding Bay Boat Ramp drive north from Jackson on Hwy 191/89 and turn left at Moose Junction. Stop at the visitor center if you need a permit. Enter the Park and continue north on Teton Park Road. Shortly after passing North Jenny Lake Junction look for a left turn on an unmarked dirt road that leads to Spalding Bay Boat Ramp.

String to Leigh Lake

Just to the south of Jackson Lake lie Leigh and String Lakes. Paddling these beautiful little lakes makes a great backcountry tour. No motorized travel is allowed on either lake and Leigh Lake has no road access. Reaching Leigh requires a short paddle to the north end of String Lake, then an easy portage. Once on Leigh Lake there are many spectacular campsites, permits are required. Boat permit stickers are also required.

To reach String Lake drive north from the Moose Visitor Center and turn left at North Jenny Lake Junction. Follow the signs to the String Lake Boat Access.

Jenny Lake

South of String Lake lies Jenny Lake. The Grand Teton and Teewinot Mountain rise abruptly above its placid, deep waters. Paddling around Jenny Lake makes an excellent afternoon tour. Small motors are allowed on the lake but kayaks and canoes are more common. Boat permit stickers are required and there are no backcountry camping areas.

To reach the boat ramp on Jenny Lake drive north from the Moose Visitor Center. Turn left on the road to Lupine Meadows. The road crosses a small bridge, then divides. Turn right onto the rough dirt road that leads to the lake.

Other Tours

There are many more paddling tours in and around the valley. Also in GTNP are Two Ocean and Emma Matilda Lakes. To the east, in the Gros Ventre Mountains, lie Upper and Lower Slide. Palisades Reservoir and the Snake River below Palisades Dam offer touring as well. Lake touring in Yellowstone National Park is outlined in the description of our kayak trips. Remember to ask the experts at Rendezvous River Sports about any of the tours in the area.

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