Hole in the Wall gorge on Young's creek has a strainer tree in the middle of a rapid, but the Forest Service put up a sign and you can portage around it and it may be possible to paddle around it as well. Every twenty minutes we had to pull to the side of the creek and portage around strainers and massive piles of fallen trees barricading the river. Eric Hanson is a photographer, filmmaker, adventurer, and host of Backpacking TV. I've heard there was some significant blow down on the pass in 2019 and I'm not sure how much of it got cleared on the trail by the end of the season. The Flathead, in northern Montana, is part of the National Wild and Scenic River System. That night, I crawled into my tent. There is no restaurant in Hungry Horse that has all three of the magic You will be hungry at this point! There’s no way to verify, but all evidence points towards the number of packrafters on the South Fork being an all-time record this year; a number certain to only grow. The South Fork of the Flathead in Montana is perhaps the best packraft river in the lower-48. This section highlights packrafting on Danaher Creek and the South Fork Flathead River when the S Fk was running at 2,500 to 3,000 cfs @ Hungry Horse. 12. your eyes peeled for huckleberries on the way). A week long self-supported trip along the South Fork of the Flathead River. Here, the views were wide open and beautiful. of people doing the whole South Fork trip in 4 days, but I would recommend at least 6 It is very scenic. It’s the perfect stove for cooking for one or two people. that says something like “take-out ¼ mile”. I felt intimidated floating on such a tiny vessel along a remote and wild river. Please check out the link here for. said, my friends and I did it and made it through having minimal prior packraft At the moment Alpacka packrafts are the only game in town. The Middle Fork of the Flathead had never been on my radar before, but a quick Google revealed a gem of a river that actually inspired the Wild and Scenic Rivers Act back in 1968. Young’s Creek Pass off of Lodgepole Trail Head(just north of Ovando, MT) and the 49 miles hiking and 19 miles floating the South Fork of the Flathead River through the middle of the Bob Marshall Wilderness, Montana. I also had 3 renters get fined $80/person in the Bob because they didn't have life jackets in their boats. The two rafting miles on Strawberry Creek passed pleasantly and I reached the Middle Fork of the Flathead at Clack Creek around 4:30pm, where I said goodbye to Will. If you are hoping to delay this river becoming a permit river, I would suggest: 1. If the water is low, it isn’t too high consequence (meaning there aren’t This pristine wilderness is remote, beautiful, and difficult to explore without the assistance of either pack animals or packrafts. I heard a roar of whitewater as we rounded the bend. Meadow Creek Trail Head parking lot. Drink some tang and have an Oreo. It is about a 20 mile round trip so start early and bring lots of water. Faced with a lot of river miles ahead of us, plus a 7-mile hike, we woke up at 6:30. So you can really get away from it all! The following days, more drainages fed the creek and the volume of river grew significantly. If you do miss it….once again We put the rafts … Especially toward the end of the trip, going into Meadow Creek Gorge. supposed to get a free bull trout targeting “stamp” on your license (last time I checked anyway). It was the first night the weather really cooperated, so I didn’t put a fly on. Huckleberry Patch and the Elk Horn Grill. Seeing the South Fork of the Flathead River for the first time in 2011, was really where the idea of starting a packraft rental company began. It was imperative I find ways to cut weight and bulk. We bumped our way through a section of a narrow gorge with several miles of rapids. But after a few miles of negotiating through small rapids and narrow passages in the river, I started to get the hang of it. Other times, the right combination of unique gear can open up a world of possibilities. It is very scenic. I have done all my trips in July and only been In 2016, I did this four-day trip, floating some of the most pristine, remote waters in the lower 48 states, and hiking through the largest roadless wilderness. It’s been over 23 years since I stood at the banks of the South Fork near Big Prairie. The wood was soaked from the recent rain, but we got a fire going and were finally able to dry out our gear. Even the calm sections had enough power to pick you up and take you away. To keep my weight to a minimum I packed my new Carbon Reflex tent, as well as the tiny HyperFlow Microfilter, and the WindBurner Stove system. Get on the “river right” at this point. It is worth the view! Packrafting the South Fork of the Flathead. If we put in too early, we might find ourselves plunging over a series of waterfalls or caught in one of the many logjams in the early portion of the river. The South Fork of the Flathead runs through the Bob Marshall Wilderness in Montana, just south of Glacier National Park. Sprawling more than 1.5 million acres, the Bob Marshall Wilderness complex (known to locals as “the Bob”), which also includes the Great Bear Wilderness and the Scapegoat Wilderness, is perhaps the wildest location in the lower 48 states. All that If I missed the pullout and went into the rapids, I would be cast passed the point of no return, hurled into an exit-less gorge with a series of challenging whitewater rapids that was well beyond my skill to navigate. water until you get over the top. Packrafting for Beginners. Other packrafts exist, but they are either too fragile for moving water use in a wilderness setting, or too heavy. Talk to the rangers and get a tour. Our route required fifteen miles of backpacking to get to our put-in on the river. The first and third time we entered the Bob (Bob Marshall Wilderness) via the If you have specific questions please feel free to contact me. stop. Or you can go East to Coram and the Glacier Grill. South Fork Flathead River packrafting Jul 31, 2014 Six Montana paddlers took a five day backpacking and packrafting trip into the Bob Marshall Wilderness to float about 56 miles of the South … If you want to have a more relaxing trip, do one It is located in one of the largest I have done it three times now and have had numerous customers do it and listened to their feedback on different routes. wilderness areas in the lower-48. later you go the more you’ll have to portage. The river was doing the majority of the work, pulling me deeper into the wilderness. 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