Upper Rattlesnake Creek is a challenging adventure that has been tackled by only a few groups. The run is characterized by a long hike in, a Class IV gorge and a class V gorge above Franklin Bridge, followed by several miles of braided beaverdams (ie portage-fest), and finally several miles of fast Class II/III. The scenery and wildlife viewing are incredible, as is the physical challenge.
Track flows here.
Floaters of Rattlesnake Creek should note the presence of a very hazardous dam below the Sawmill Gulch Road bridge, and above the trailhead at the end of Duncan Drive. This section should be avoided, as the dam usually acts like a large concrete strainer that cannot be seen from above. Floaters who enter the section and encounter a large concrete structure to river left should exit left above the structure, haul boats, and walk the trails around the area toward Duncan Drive. Put back in below the dam, and you have an excellent float on the lower section. Link to beta on this section:
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Permits are not required for this reach.
We have no additional detail on this route.
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Rattlesnake Creek just above the Trailhead
Chill Section on Upper Rattlesnake
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Wild rivers and their enthusiasts got some good news with the release of the new 15-20 year Forest plan for the Flathead National Forest. The decision newly protects 22 streams as eligible for Wild and Scenic designation, based in large part on the advocacy of American Whitewater and our awesome partners and members in Montana. These protections will serve as a vital steppingstone to the designation of some of our Nation’s most outstanding headwater streams.
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