Briggs Creek, Oregon, US
|Usual Difficulty||V (for normal flows)|
|Avg. Gradient||200 fpm|
|Max Gradient||250 fpm|
|ILLINOIS RIVER NEAR KERBY, OR|
|usgs-14377100||1500 - 4000 cfs||V||55h50m||40.7 cfs (too low)|
Stream: Briggs Creek is a class V run that can be done as a day trip, or used as an alternate (kayak only) put in for the Wild and Scenic section of the Illinois. If you are doing the overnight option, gear can be stashed at Briggs Creek Campground so the creek can be run without loaded boats.
The first mile is class I-III. Once the whitewater picks up its game on until exiting The Brig, a short walled in section near the end. Most of the whitewater is class IV-V at low flows, with 2 solid class Vs. One of the class V's was at the beginning of the whitewater section, the other was at the entrance to The Brig. Both were portageable on the right at low flows. At low flows there are short, moving pools between the rapids allowing for recovery time and the setting of safety if needed. The rapids had plenty of variety and come back to back. At medium flows you can expect a consistent class V experience.
As mentioned above, most of the rapids are bouldery and scoutable and portageable with the notable exception of the rapids in The Brig, this walled in section near the end of the run climaxes at a final un/un rapid that is not portageable, and only partially scoutable. At most flows this rapid can be boofed off the rock in the center, if flows are high it forms a nasty recycling hole. The rapids leading up to that final rapid in The Brig are no harder than what has been encountered upstream.
Gauge: The creek is visual only, check the photos tab for the scoop on the visual gauge.
To get an idea of whether there might be water in Briggs, take a look at the Illinois Gauge. 3,000 cfs give or take 500 cfs is probably going to mean a medium flow. Give or take another 1,000 cfs from that and you are in the proximity of the extremes of the paddle-able flow range.
Access: Put in at Brushy Bar, take out at Briggs Creek Campground (where the visual gauge is). A high clearance vehicle is required for the shuttle. There is a map in the photos page.