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Difficulty V+
Length Miles
Gauge CLAVEY R NR BUCK MEADOWS
Flow Range 400 - 1200 CFS
Flow Rate as of: 8 years ago 2 [CFS]
Reach Info Last Updated 06/04/2009 9:38 pm

River Description


This lower section of the Clavey River is reported to be more difficult than the upper section, but very beautiful and pristine. 

 

Put in:  The road to the put in bridge is reported to be very long and hard to find.   Additionally, in the early season it appears common to have fallen trees across the road.   Many boaters simply paddle the upper section first, camp at the lower bridge or just paddle both upper and lower sections in one long day. 

 

Take out:  The Clavey River joins the wild and scenic Tuolumne at Clavey Falls.   Boaters must continue downstream on the Tuolumne River to take out at Ward's Ferry Road. 

 

Camping options are reported to be very limited along the lower Clavey.

 

Other Information Sources:
Boof.com forum
Clavey River Watershed Plan
Clavey River information from Friends of the River
Fred Norquist trip report from 2009
A Guide to the Best Whitewater in the State of CA, Holbek and Stanley, 1988

Rapid Descriptions

Old gauge

Class - Mile - 0
Rapid Thumbnail Missing

This is the approximate location of the USGS streamgauge that was operational from 1959 to 1995.  

USGS 11283500 CLAVEY R NR BUCK MEADOWS CA

Comments

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Buck Crockett
|
1 year ago

I ran this section last weekend 5/20-21/2017. It is much more challenging than the upper. Also, there is a three-mile hike to the put in due to a road closer. And the road to the lower takeout/ Putin is closed. Winter storms were hard on the road infrastructure in this area. Check out this google earth screencast for more information on this advanced run. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kJdisSBnX5w&feature=youtu.be

Gauge Description


Optimum flows for both upper and lower sections are reported to be around 500 to 900 cfs at the upper put in.  Three miles downstream, Reed Creek will add another 150 to 300 cfs.  So optimum flows at the lower run should be around 750 to 1200 cfs.

 

There are no functioning gauges on the Clavey at present so there is no way to know for sure what the flows are without going and looking at the River.  Once at the river there is no way to know exactly what cfs you are looking at either, so use good judgement about whether the river seems high or low. 

One way of estimating run off season flows of the Clavey at the confluence is to find the daily inflow to New Don Pedro, subtract the flow of the Tuolumne at Meral's Pool then multiply by 6/10.   (Inflow to Don Pedro) - (Merals Pool)]*(0.6)= Clavey at confluence.   (formula is courtesy Clavey Coalition Noah)

Dreamflows estimates flow during late spring and summer based on historical relationships between Clavey and other nearby gauges. 

 

Daily Flows Realtime Flows Dreamflows Home
Show 30 Days
Show 3 Years

 

 

There were two historical gauges on the Clavey River, plus a gauge on Reed Creek.

USGS 11283250 CLAVEY R NR LONG BARN CA
USGS 11283350 REED C NR LONG BARN CA

 

 

USGS   11283500       CLAVEY R NR BUCK MEADOWS CA

This gauge was operational from 1959 to 1995 and was located close to the put in at the lower bridge at an elevation of 2,374.08 feet above sea level.   If there is still a staff gauge visible on the river you can estimate the flow in cfs from the historical readings.  
 

Some flows in cfs compared to gauge height.
cfs 152 192 248 551 599 897 990
height 4.21 4.67 5.13 6.84 7.01 7.67 8.24

 

The Peak Streamflow page also shows both gauge heights and cfs.  That data is copied below.

Water
Year
Date Gage
Height
(feet)
Stream-
flow
(cfs)
1960 Feb. 08, 1960 11.52 3,420
1961 Apr. 04, 1961 7.07 576
1962 Feb. 09, 1962 13.32 3,570
1963 Feb. 01, 1963 21.40 19,200
1964 Nov. 15, 1963 11.23 2,480
1965 Dec. 23, 1964 18.60 12,400
1966 Nov. 18, 1965 10.21 1,850
1967 Dec. 06, 1966 14.76 5,950
1968 Feb. 20, 1968 9.02 1,270
1969 Jan. 21, 1969 16.79 8,920
1970 Jan. 21, 1970 15.52 6,970
1971 Mar. 26, 1971 11.82 2,950
1972 Dec. 22, 1971 8.37 1,090
1973 May 19, 1973 10.76 2,250
1974 Nov. 12, 1973 12.85 3,870
1975 May 18, 1975 11.72 2,870
       
1976 Oct. 26, 1975 8.09 1,040
1977 May 23, 1977 5.34 246
1978 Apr. 25, 1978 12.67 3,680
1979 Jan. 11, 1979 12.21 3,270
1980 Jan. 13, 1980 21.47 19,400
1981 Apr. 23, 1981 8.80 1,200
1982 Feb. 16, 1982 19.85 15,200
1983 Mar. 13, 1983 15.04 6,350
1987 Feb. 13, 1987 7.81 829
1988 Apr. 27, 1988 6.41 458
1989 Mar. 08, 1989 12.20 3,260
1990 Oct. 24, 1989 9.06 1,310
1991 Oct. 24, 1990 9.06 1,310
1992 Apr. 13, 1992 7.34 727
1993 Mar. 17, 1993 11.58 2,760
1994 Apr. 20, 1994 6.61 537
1997 Jan. 03, 1997 28.66 47,0007

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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.

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Paul Martzen