A local favorite: beginners like it for its relatively easy (mostly Class II, but there are a couple of III-) rapids; experienced paddlers head there for the play. Everyone likes its beauty.
Check out Three Rivers Paddling Club or Larry Wentzel's exhaustive description.Directions: head for McConnell's Mill State Park. From the West and North, take I-80 to Rt. 19 South. Check out the Keel-haulers Map (linked to in the 'Maps' section at the right) for details to the putin and takeout. There are several alternate putins: the Ranger Station, probably half a mile downstream from Rt. 422; Frew's Mill, a mile or so upstream of 422 (this adds a lot of flatwater, but it also adds a couple of neat rapids and some nice scenery); and Rose Point, not far upstream of 422. Rose Point is an easier putin, but it adds some flatwater and parking is limited.
It can be a fun run in the mid-winter, but be warned: you might find the wrong kind of white water. Click here to see what I mean.
For those who might have trouble with the Slippery Rock Gorge, especially at high water, check out the Lower Slippery Rock.
For the extra flatwater, if you put in here, you get a spanky slopy drop to begin your river trip. The drop under the bridge is pretty scrapy at levels below about a foot on the stick gauge. It's a cool drop at higher levels, but watch out for the eddy on river left--you can get shoved into a rock and woody debris and stuff.
Lat/longitude coords for putins, takeout, and rapids are verified by GPS.
Easy putin, but parking is limited, and there's more flatwater (though pretty) than if you use the putins downstream.
This used to be popular. If you use this one, park well off the road (on the river-left side of the eastbound lane of the highway) and be respectful of private property. It's a steep hike down to the river.
The fourth putin. Park at the Ranger Station and hike downstream.
This deep hole in a narrow space between two large boulders is a great playspot. Old-schoolers get enders here; modern playboaters use the hole for their own devices. Try to roll up quickly, as there's a sloping rock on river left that you can easily get swept up against.
This is another hole formed by a boulder constriction. At higher levels (1.5' or more), the hole is quite munchy. Punching it is risky; you can usually boof into a small eddy to the extreme right. There's a large pool after this rapid before the portage at McConnell's Mill.
This beautiful mill, a major attraction of the park, with tours and a covered bridge just downstream, is a mandatory portage. Take out at the beach on River Left and put in on the rocks below the Mill.
The stick gauge is just downstream of the dam, on river left.
Three drops (duh), with lots of eddies to catch on the way. This is one of the tougher drops in the Mile between McConnell's Mill and the takeout.
Also known as Susan's G Spot, this has a great popup spot on river left and a grabby pourover hole to the right of the sweet spot. Pick your poison!
At the right level (Maybe 0.7-1.8 feet on the stick gauge), this rapid has one of the sweetest flat-spinning holes imaginable. It'll give you a dozen donuts without any effort. This is the last rapid before Eckert's Bridge.
Renamed in June 2006, in honor of Martin Wick, a stalwart supporter of Slippery Rock Creek.
Take out on river left.
As of 8-6-14 the strainer at Gilligans is gone. Big props to who
ever removed it. Watch for new strainer at airport.
There is a strainer blocking the right channel of gilligan's island (the rapid after you pass under route 422 with the big rock and eddy that everyone practices roll in). You can walk on the right or paddle the seldom run left channel. Also I was there last week when the AW gauge read 0.7 FT. However it was just about 0.0 FT.
There are a few things you need to know about this run. First of all it is a small hike down to the put in and up to the bridge after the take out. These paths are covred in slippery rocks (this is what the creek is named after and for a very good reason) BE VERY CAREFULL!!! a broken ankle is very possible.Second about halfway down the first part of the run to the covered bridge there is a large rock on river right that is great to do seal dives off of. Third shortly after the covered bridge there is a series of rapids in a row. Shortly after the beginning of this series there is a big log in front of a big boulder at river right that comes out about 4 - 5 feet. This is very dangerous because you can't see it until it is right on top of you. Scout this rapid before running it. there is a path on river left that runs the length of the rapid. Other than that this creek is spectacular to run and a great creek to teach a new paddler as long as caution is taken when approaching the log I just talked about.
The USGS gauge at Wurtemburg PA is back - use it instead of the USACE gauge mentioned above.
The gage is also available online at the USACE Beaver/Ohio site. There is a correlation to the McConnell's Mill stick gage: McConnell's Mill = Wurtemburg * 1.4 - 1.7 . 0' is minimum; 2.0' is getting high. (People do run it below the suggested min and above the suggested max, of course. Consider the above when determining your fun levels.)
Permits are not required for this reach.
Used to be, to shuttle you'd drive through the park and take Kildoo Road to get to the takeout. Kildoo Road is now closed, so the best way to get to Eckert Bridge is to go out to Rte. 19 and take Cheeseman Road downhill.
For directions from the Ranger Station to the takeout, click here.
KHCC Trip 4/18/15
Mill around ~3feet
Rafting Kennedy Mill!
Rope swing fun
A nice June day.
Just above Airport
Nothing like running the Slipp in a 4 Man!
Just below the Mill
Triple Drop from the bottom.
We Need Rain!!
Triple Drop at -8 inches
Joyce @ Martin's Ledge
Phil Raber @ Gib's Nemesis
Have you ever saw an Otter surf?
Am i sinking
Walk in the Park
Happy Casually Scouts
Another Gray Day on the Slip
Gray Day on the Slip
Boat Launch Rock
The Maytag Punch
Chicken Toes (KHCC)
Susan's G Spot
Triple Drop, Slippery Rock
If someone gets hurt on a river, or you read about a whitewater-related injury, please report it to
American Whitewater. Don't worry about multiple submissions from other witnesses, as our safety
editors will turn multiple witness reports into a single unified accident report.
This past fall American Whitewater met with Ohiopyle State Park managers to discuss possible updates to their whitewater paddling regulations. The first topic was to change the rules governing raft sizes at different water levels to recognize the capabilities of self-bailing rafts. Shorter self-bailing boats will now be allowed to run the river at high water. Some small changes to the regulations will make Ohiopyle Falls more accessible to paddlers. A change in the way the gauge is interpreted should make the falls "legal" on more days. Although whitewater paddlers are only one part of the vast public that visits the park, every effort was made to accommodate them while avoiding user conflicts and safety hazards. Special thanks goes to Ken Bisbee, Ohiopyle State Park Operations Manager and John Hallas, a former Ohiopyle State Park Operations Manager who is now Director of State Parks. Click here to read the updated Ohiopyle River Regulations:
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