Little Cow Creek - Phillips Drive to Buzzard Roost Road


Little Cow Creek, California, US

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Phillips Drive to Buzzard Roost Road

Usual Difficulty III-IV(V) (for normal flows)
Length 3.1 Miles
Avg. Gradient 166 fpm


River Description

Take out: From I-5 in Redding take Highway 299 north east toward round mountain. After about 22 miles make a right on Oak Run Road. In about 1.6 miles, turn left on Buzzard Roost Rd. and drive about .8 mile till you cross abridge over little cow creek. this is take out. maybe 30 min from redding or more.

Put in: From take out continue on buzzard roost rd another 2.4 miles, then make a right on phillips and drive about 1.5 miles till you cross bridge over little cow creek. put in anywhere here.

The Run: Short 2.5 mile continous class IV with one V. Starts off read in run fast class III-IV with lots of brush in side of creek and logs so watch out for strainers. there is eddie service but look far ahead so you don't get caught off guard. the first mile had some fun little holes to punch as well as good boof rocks and waves to launch off.

I ducked under 2 logs in the first mile but everything was runnable till I got to the first portage which was a river wide strainer with rocks and down logs. Portage right was easy, watch for poison oak. Before you get back in your boat scout the next drop. this was the only V I called milk cow. There is a class 3 lead in then a 3-4 foot ledge river left. take this route, the right side was not clean. after the first ledge there is about 5 feet before the creek squeezes up between the left wall and a big boulder in the middle causeing a 7 foot drop into a good reversal that was very sticky. there was lots of foamy water in here so it is hard to get a good brace. the slot itself was clean.

From here the river stays read and run IV as the land begins to open up alittle into rolling hills. Just before the 2nd mile there is another portage around a wire fence crossing the river. portage either side. Just behind this wire are many limbs and small trees growing in the streambed causing many strainers so you may want to walk beyond this before puting back in. From here the creek picks up again and there are a series of very fun slides that end in very retentive holes that are river wide which you must punch through. Some of these are back to back to back so don't loose to much momentum so you can punch all of them. After this there is one last rapid I named cow kicker. The creek narrows and a short slide into a corkscrew wave at the bottom. There is a rock slab on the right of this that is shallow. Going in I hit the funky corkscrew wave and immediatly flipped to my right only to end up dragging my face on the rock slab and busting my chin open to the bone. Felt like i got kicked by a cow anyway. next time I will enter on the left side. Take out is soon after this under the bridge, catch an eddie because there is a fence crossing the river just under the bridge.

This run goes with any good rain, i am guessing 250-350cfs at take out was a good flow.

Jon Vengley, April 2006
StreamTeam Status: Not Verified
Last Updated: 2006-04-07 18:29:20

Rapid Descriptions

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