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Clinton - W. Avon Road (at Livernois) to E. Avon Road (Yates Dam) (5 miles)
Clinton, Michigan, US
W. Avon Road (at Livernois) to E. Avon Road (Yates Dam) (5 miles)
I-II(III) (varies with level)
Redboat Tom blasting thru Rochester rapid - high water
Redboat Tom blasting thru Rochester rapid - high water Photo of Redboat Tom by Rich G taken 01/13/13 @ high runnable
Undoubtedly too low for good whitewater. Gauge (309 sq.mi. drainage) is downstream of this reach so might slightly lag and exaggerate actual flow in reach.
Mostly flatwater/swiftwater in-town float, but there are a couple good rips. Be very aware of the
dam at Yates, which should be portaged by most paddlers at most flows. This is a classic
'killer low-head dam', and has killed unwary paddlers who underestimated the
Plan on scouting and portaging at this dam. People have died misjudging the danger here! That said, at some flows this dam may be safely run by suitably experienced paddlers, with proper precautions and careful assessment of the backwash. Have someone with a throw-rope (and the knowledge of how to use it) on shore. We do not need more deaths in classic 'low-head dams' such as this one.
Pay special attention to the boil-line below the dam as a canoe runs the dam in this video. Be aware that a shorter boat (like a play kayak) will not 'bridge' the drop nearly so well, and is more likely to get caught in the reversal!