Tonto Creek, Arizona, US
|Usual Difficulty||III-IV(V) (for normal flows)|
|Avg. Gradient||38 fpm|
|Max Gradient||50 fpm|
|TONTO CREEK ABOVE GUN CREEK, NEAR ROOSEVELT, AZ|
|usgs-09499000||400 - 2200 cfs||III-IV(V)||01h29m||53.7 cfs (too low)|
Tonto Creek is an Arizona classic gorge! And Monsoon dependent.
Minimum flow: 400 CFS / Maximum flow: +/- 6000 CFS
Tonto Creek makes for an interesting ramble through the desert into a colorful gorge.
Putting in at Rye Creek confluence with Tonto Creek is the easiest way to do a day section of this unique Arizona Monsoon offering. Leave Flagstaff in the morning and be home for dinner. Willows, big boulders in the river and colorful mini gorges. Pretty fun!
Original Write Up:(to preserve until 2019)
THE RUN: The put-in for this run starts on Rye Creek. From the
start it's shallow and overrun with brush, then becomes a micro creek with bedrock, and often
covered with cattle fences, so take caution. This is a fun run when it is running.
Usually doesn't run unless it is in the monsoon season (fall) or in a heavy run-off. This is a classic Class III run with a creekboat feel. At high water this is a class 5 and pretty demanding. In 1993 Wesley Hall died here, after a long swim, and the creek was flooding (extremely high).
There are a bunch of boulder gardens, and a few strainers hanging over the shoreline that you have to look out for. About halfway through this run powerlines cross overhead, and it is a good idea to eddy-out river left to scout the biggest drop on the creek. The drop, often called The Gauntlet or Pinrock, is about an 8-ft. tounge that is very constricted, with a sticky hole at the bottom. The drop kind of goes in this narrow canal and is very aerated, lots of fun, and you go deep!
About a mile before the takeout, it's worth stopping on river right to check out Gold Creek and take a short hike up to an amazing waterfall.
After that there are your usual boulder drops and a few sticky pourovers, that always surprises the unaware boater. Overall definitely worth doing, especially if you are an AZ ELF BOATER. (Extremely Low Flow).
This is also added....note: That Tonto is one of AZ best day runs, added safety is a must!
|Mile||Rapid Name||Class||Features (Legend)|
|0.0||canyon put in||N/A|