Little Garlic, Michigan, US
|Usual Difficulty||II-IV (for normal flows)|
|Avg. Gradient||52 fpm|
|Max Gradient||90 fpm|
|YELLOW DOG RIVER NEAR BIG BAY, MI|
|usgs-04043275||180 - 600 cfs||II-IV||118d19h01m||~ 80 cfs (too low)|
|Almost certainly too low for whitewater run. Drainage (a bit below take-out) is just under half the Yellow Dog at its gauge, so flows here *could* be just under half that gauge. Correlation not assured.|
With its sister river, the Big Garlic, right nearby, one would expect the Little
Garlic might be substantially smaller. However, former USGS sampling locations for each show
drainages to be (surprisingly) substantially the same! (Both are right aroung 15 square miles at
or below Big Bay Road / 550.) The Big Garlic may have fewer branches, thus perhaps keeping more
drainage area further up its watershed (to its listed put-in point), but photos of the falls on
the Little Garlic look interesting! Still, we suspect this (like its sister run) is likely to be
something folks may do once (to see and experience its falls), but say "Never
Have a look at Little Garlic Falls at Waterfalls of the Keweenaw.
|Mile||Rapid Name||Class||Features (Legend)|
|-1.9||Possible access point||N/A|
|-1.6||Possible Access Point||N/A|
|-1.4||Possible alternate access||N/A|
|1.3||Little Garlic Falls||IV|
|5.7||USGS sampling site||N/A|
GoogleMaps shows a road or trail crossing the river at this point. However, I am unable to verify that via the satellite image, which shows no perceivable break in the trees.
Satellite view appears to show a road (fording the stream -- no bridge) at this point. Oddly this does not show as a road on 'Map' view.
Unfortunately, the Satellite view seems to have been taken with trees in full-leaf, and the river is almost entirely obscured in these upper reaches. That may or may not reflect on how small and wooded up the stream is this far upstream, but it does weigh heavily on our decision to recommend put-in further downstream.
This is a trib of the Little Garlic (though it actually appears to be slightly longer/larger than the Little Garlic upstream of the confluence). If it appears boatable at this road crossing, it may be a better choice for put-in.
Downstream, be on the lookout for at least one footbridge which may or may not have adequate clearance to pass under with boatable flows. Also anticipate that deadfall and snags are likely more of a problem than they may be on the main run.
Our listed put-in (the footbridge on the Little Garlic proper) is about 0.25 mile up from confluence with this tributary. We therefore measure up the tributary 0.25 miles before listing our (upstream/negative) distances on this trib (so that the distance listed reflects how much this would actually add to the listed run length).
Actually 0.73 upstream of confluence. (Again, distance is being listed to reflect that the listed put-in on Little Garlic is 0.25 upstream of that confluence, thus we subtract that distance to show that if one were to put in at this location, it would add just the listed distance to the run mileage.)
Actually 0.5 upstream of confluence. (Again, distance is being listed to reflect that the listed put-in on Little Garlic is 0.25 upstream of that confluence, thus we subtract that distance to show that if one were to put in at this location, it would add just the listed distance to the run mileage.)
A house on river-right just after a 90-degree left bend signals a rapids.
There is a fine sequence of ledges, slides, and falls starting here.
A bit of description and a couple of photos are at: Waterfalls of the Keweenaw.
There is trailhead parking just 0.1 mile from this bridge, making it a handy location for access for shorter trips.
Running from put-in as listed down to here gives a run of 2.57 miles with ~54 FPM overall, but with some steep gradient and named falls.
From here down to listed take-out would be a trip of ~3 miles at ~46 FPM with no apparent steep gradient or named falls.
USGS lists a sampling site at this location with drainage area of 15 square miles.