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Difficulty II at this flow (II normally)
Length 7.5 Miles
Gauge Moshannon Creek (Red Mo) at RT53 Bridge
Flow Range 350 - 2500 CFS
Flow Rate as of: 4 hours ago 907.384 [CFS] ℹ️ ⚠️
Reach Info Last Updated 02/13/2018 8:14 pm

River Description

The classic Central PA introduction to class II whitewater!  The tainted Moshannon Creek is affectionally known as "Red Mo".  If you love the whitewater features of Spring Creek in Bellefonte, PA, Red Mo is the next logical step in the progression.

The last weekend of every March, Tussey Mountain Outfitters organizes Pennsylvania's longest running downriver race...

Red Moshannon Downriver Race
This race is held in the Spring on a remote 7.5 mile section of Moshannon Creek.  It starts at Peale Bridge near the town of Grassflat PA, and ends at the Route 53 Bridge near the town of Moshannon PA.  At moderate levels and typical temperatures for this time of year, this section is rated Class II.

There are classes for solo and tandem open canoes, kayaks, and decked canoes.  Racers can also participate in the "poker race" by picking up cards along the race course - the best hand wins.

The Red Mo Race was begun in 1967. The Penn State Outing Club Canoe Division ran the race from 1967 to 1980. There was no race in 1976. The 1981 race was jointly sponsored by PSOC and Tussey Mountain Outfitters. TMO has run the race since 1982. Boat classes have varied over the years and the race history reflects the awards made in each year.

Sierra Club column - "Helping Out on the Red Mo"



Rapid Descriptions


Class - I Mile - 0
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Put-in river-left just below the Peale bridge. 

Tiffs Riff

Class - I Mile - 2.8
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The first "action" after 2+ miles of warm up.   Wavetrains on river-right where most of the flow pushes.

Mammoth Rock

Class - II Mile - 2.9
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Preacher's Island

Class - I Mile - 3
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The clear path is river-right of this island.  This is the popular destination for "on-river" spectating  carnage at Rattlesnake Rapid on race day!


Class - II Mile - 3.1
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Class - II Mile - 3.8
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Zig Zag

Class - II Mile - 4.2
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Magnavox Rocks

Class - II Mile - 5
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Rocks the size of a Magnavox TV river-right on the outside of a slight turn to the left. 

The Slot

Class - II Mile - 5.2
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Four Pines Island

Class - I Mile - 5.5
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Looks to only be 3 pines remaining. Keep river-left. 

Slant Rock

Class - II Mile - 6
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The biggest hole on the Red Mo.  The Slant Rock is river-left and the hole is left of center.  Playable if you can attain.  Some brave folks have been seen jumping off this rock, but it would appear to be a fairly shallow landing.    

Chicko's Rock

Class - II Mile - 6.7
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Stay river-left to miss the "action".  Beware of Chicko's that lurks submerged in the middle of the river halfway through the rapid.  

Twinn Rocks

Class - N/A Mile - 7.3
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Stay river-right and "split" the Twinn's because this is the finale!


Class - I Mile - 7.5
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Take-out river-left under or just past the bridge.


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Bob Williams
4 years ago

Bridge Gauge 1.5 made for an awesome trip. Very little scrapping.

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Aaron Harchak
8 years ago

The gauge on the Rt 53 bridge is 2 ft today May 5, 2011 at 6:00 PM and this is a nearly ideal water level to run the Red Mo. I am told that it is runnable down to about 1 ft on this gauge but that you can expect to be scraping a lot of rocks along the way.

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Jon Nelson
8 years ago

An attempt to add to the flow information for the Red Mo. This comes from Don Frew: Red Mo cfs at Rt 53 Bridge = (West Branch Karthus - West Branch Hyde (lag 12 hrs) - Clearfield/Dimeling (lag 12 hr))*0.4492. Not a lot of experience yet with this -- but we think that 400 cfs is about 0 feet; 800 is about 1.0 ft; 1000 cfs is about 2.0 ft; 1200 cfs is about 2.5 ft; and 2000 cfs is about 3.0 ft. If you post the bridge gage reading here, along with the date and time of the run, this info can be added to the date base. Thanks.

Gage Descriptions

There is no online gauge.  There is a painted guage on the route 53 bridge which can be easily seen from the gravel parking area on river-left.  1 foot is consider the minium comfortable run.   

Approximation from nearby online gauges courtesy Don Frew:

Red Mo cfs at Rt 53 Bridge = (West Branch Karthus - West Branch Hyde (lag 12 hrs) - Clearfield/Dimeling (lag 12hr))*0.4492. 

Not a lot of experience yet with this -- but we think that 400 cfs is about 0 feet;
800 is about 1.0 ft; 1000 cfs is about 2.0 ft; 1200 cfs is about 2.5 ft; and 2000 cfs is about 3.0
ft. If you post the bridge gage reading here, along with the date and time of the run, this info
can be added to the database.

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.

Date Flow Result Factor  
2010-04-01 Medium Fatality Cold Water Read More



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Army Corps Study Threatens Lehigh River Boating

Bob Nasdor

Paddlers on the Lehigh River below the Francis E. Walter Dam and Reservoir are concerned that a planned study by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and its partners, the Delaware River Basin Commission (DRBC) and the New York City Department of Environmental Protection will lead to a reduction in whitewater boating opportunities on the Lehigh. The study will evaluate the feasibility of various alternatives to optimize project operation. Aside from the project's authorized primary missions of flood risk management and recreation, the study will also consider water supply and water quality, to identify possible improvements to the existing structure, infrastructure, and operations that will support current and future demands within the region. The Army Corps is holding a public meeting on January 9, 2020 at the Mountain Laurel Resort in White Haven, PA from 6-8 p.m. to explain the study and hear public comments. American Whitewater, Appalachian Mountain Club, and other organizations are expected to file comments with the Army Corps prior to the September 29th deadline in order to share our concerns about the study and potential impacts on boating, the outdoor recreation economy, and the Delaware RIver Basin. We encourage our members to attend the public meeting to voice their concerns.

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Pennsylvania Dam Removal Conference to be Held January 31st.

Kevin Colburn

There will be a one day conference on January 31st in eastern Pennsylvania that will address dam removal and rehabilitation in the state and region. It is likely that this very affordable conference would be helpful to paddlers interested in working on dam removal projects in Pennsylvania and elsewhere. Registration for the conference is due by January 23rd.

Matt Muir


Aaron Fleishman


Brian Gilbert


Revision #Revision DateAuthorComment
1191437 04/11/01 n/a n/a
1206961 10/27/16 Aaron Fleishman updated section name
1197478 04/02/10 Matt Muir Changed name; updated link to Red Mo Race.
1203018 01/24/14 Brian Gilbert Updated to focus on Peale to RT53 race section
1203019 01/24/14 Brian Gilbert
1203020 01/24/14 Brian Gilbert Added description and Red Mo race details
1203021 01/24/14 Brian Gilbert
1203022 01/24/14 Brian Gilbert
1203023 01/24/14 Brian Gilbert
1203190 10/19/16 Aaron Fleishman updated name of creek to reflect current naming
1203092 02/19/14 Brian Gilbert Grammar fix
1208907 02/13/18 Aaron Fleishman Updated difficulty.
1206967 10/27/16 Aaron Fleishman Updated difficulty