East Branch Millstone Creek - Loleta to Clarion

East Branch Millstone Creek, Pennsylvania, US


Loleta to Clarion (Lower Millstone Creek)

Usual Difficulty I-II(III) (for normal flows)
Length 4 Miles

Gauge Information

Name Range Difficulty Updated Level
Clarion River at Cooksburg, PA
usgs-03029500 5000 - 20000 cfs I-II(III) 01h04m 812 cfs (too low)

River Description

Millstone Creek runs from near Marienville to the Clarion River near Belltown. This reach consists of first the East Branch of the Millstone from near the Loleta National Forest Campground to the confluence with the West Branch about 2 miles later, then Millstone Creek proper for the last two miles to the Clarion River. When the water is high enough to paddle, the East Branch from Loleta is a quick, narrow (20 ft wide)stream with nearly constant gradient. There are very few pools and eddies are scarce, and the trees on the banks sometimes lean over the water, but the constant gradient gives two miles of class II technical paddling that almost never slows down. There are couple of spots that stand out as harder sections, as well as a beaver dam that was flooded over, providing a wierd drop. The East and West Branches join at a pipeline swath cut through the forest, and the confluence is visible from the road through this cut. Here the volume of water doubles and the stream changes character, becoming wider and with less manuevering required. This larger stream goes another 2 miles till it empties into the Clarion River.
Acess is not too bad, with parking near the bridge at the mouth of the creek. A dirt road parallels the creek, near at the mouth then pulling away and climbing the shoulder of the valley before dropping near the creek before it meets the road with Loleta campground (Loleta Road, oddly enough). I usually put in at the very end of this parallel road, just before the stop sign. Then take out near the bridge at the mouth, probably not going out into the Clarion. When there's enough water for Millstone to flow that means the Clarion is pretty darn high.
There is camping at Loleta campground, to the end of the creekside road and to the left 100 yds. There are also some roadside/streamside primitive sites as well as real (legal) backcountry camping all around.
Another thing to consider: the West branch of Millstone is supposed to have some tougher rapids on it (class III). I've ventured upstream a short distance from the confluence and it seems to be slightly narrower and steeper. The next upstream access of this creek is 5 miles upstream, off of Loleta road, about 4 miles past the campground. Once you pass the road to Buzzard Swamp, it's the bridge over the stream near the tiny water treatment plant for Marienville. Something to think about....
StreamTeam Status: Not Verified
Last Updated: 2000-09-29 21:33:25


Rapid Descriptions

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User Comments

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April 22 2016 (1005 days ago)
Whetstone (157971)
fun run we have been doing it for awhile. Prone to beaver dam. First off there is an IRON PIPE mid
creek at runnable flow its under water just up of the bridge at Loleta so if you start at national
park dam watch OUT. the best rapid on the millstone is called Reggie's Rapid which starts with 2
ledges and a whole bunch of class 2 jive for half a mile or so next would be the Strike zone, Gas
pipe, swinging bridge, Pyramid and a bunch of nameless stuff great intro to creeking always watch
for wood and beaver dams. ************* April 14ish ran this when clarion was at 8.2 beaver dam
looked runnable 1 portage in the first mile tree down Good times!