This photo needs editing.
Difficulty II-III+(IV)
Length 4 Miles
Gauge N/A
Flow Range
Reach Info Last Updated 08/14/2017 1:50 am

River Description

Birch Creek is a small (and unfortunately restricted) creek in SW Ohio through Glen Helen Park. The university restricts access to hiking only. You can access the river from outside the Park, but expect to run into trouble if you try to boat it.  Is it possible that one day things will change? Yes. Right now it is unlikely.

The river has several waterfalls and sliding ledges. The main falls is boatable but does land on rocks. It would be painful if you land badly, but there are far worse drops out there that get boated. The takeout is on the Little Miami below Clifton Gorge.

Rapid Descriptions

Drainage: ~4.23 sq.mi.

Class - N/A Mile - 0
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At our listed put-in, drainage area is about 4.23 square miles (as calculated by USGS StreamStats 4.0 beta software).


Class - N/A Mile - 0.25
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At 1/4th mile into your run, you'll see the bridge to the Glen Helen Raptor Center and Glen Helen Outdoor Education Center. This is where the action takes off as you enter 'The Cascades'. A foot trail ('The Inman Trail') parallels the creek (at river-right) over the next quarter-mile.

Glen Helen Falls

Class - IV+ Mile - 0.5
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Glen Helen Falls is a short waterfall onto a ledge. (At present, if you go to Google maps, you can find associated picture(s) of this falls.)

Confluence: Yellow Springs Creek

Class - N/A Mile - 0.67
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At 2/3rds mile, Birch Creek ends as you confluence with Yellow Springs Creek. It has ~4.92 sq.mi. drainage at this point, thus (most likely) meaning from here to the Little Miami, you'll have slightly more than double the flow.

Grinnell Road

Class - N/A Mile - 1.8
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Confluence: Little Miami

Class - N/A Mile - 1.94
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Just after passing the Glen Helen Covered Bridge Yellow Springs Creek confluences with the Little Miami River. (The combined drainage area at this point is 115 sq.mi., with only relatively minor additional drainages contributing in the next ~2 miles to your take-out.)


No Gage

Gage Descriptions

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Directions Description

We have no additional detail on this route. Use the map below to calculate how to arrive to the main town from your zipcode.

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article main photo

New Hydro Project for Cuyahoga (OH)

Thomas O'Keefe

The Cuyahoga River, the river that burned, played a pivotal role in the birth of the nation's river conservation movement. While restoration gains have been significant, a proposal for a new hydropower project on a dam targeted for removal would represent a signficant setback in ongoing restoration efforts and would delay for at least half a century any effort to bring back the lost whitewater that sits buried behind the Ohio Edison Gorge Dam. Paddler participation at upcoming scoping meetings is important.





Revision #Revision DateAuthorComment
1199836 04/16/11 wreeves
1199837 04/17/11 wreeves
1199835 04/16/11 wreeves n/a
1199881 04/20/11 wreeves
1208196 08/14/17 Rob fix numerous typos