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Document - Chelan Flow Study


Controlled flow studies are an effective way to asses flows for whitewater recreation, particularly on river segments below dams. Yet, these studies can pose substantial methodological challenges, which are compounded on steep reaches with difficult whitewater and no previous boating use. Such challenges were encountered during a study of the "boatability" of the Chelan River, a 4-mile reach with Class IV/V rapids downstream from the 48-MW Lake Chelan Hydroelectric Project in central Washington State. For the study, six kayakers conducted an on-river assessment. Results suggest flows around 225 to 250 cubic feet per second (cfs) are marginally "boatable", the optimal range is 300 to 400 cfs, and standard trips transition to "big water" opportunities above 400 cfs.


Recreational flow study for the Chelan River in Washington State.

Document Information

Filename - Chelan Flow Study328.pdf

Size - 1.72MB

Associated Projects

  • Chelan (WA)
    AW has worked to restore flows and provide public access to the Chelan Gorge

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