Snake - C) Milner Dam to Milner Power Plant (Milner Mile)

Snake, Idaho, US


C) Milner Dam to Milner Power Plant (Milner Mile)

Usual Difficulty V+ (for normal flows)
Length 1.6 Miles

Milner Miracle Mile

Milner Miracle Mile
Photo by Rob Lesser taken 04/17/09 @ 12500 cfs

Gauge Information

Name Range Difficulty Updated Level
usgs-13087995 10000 - 15000 cfs V+ 01h19m 0 cfs (too low)

River Description

With an unusual combination of high gradient and big volume, the Milner Gorge of the Snake is considered the most difficult big water run in Idaho. The rapids are huge, powerful, and continuous for the entire 1.3 mile length. This stretch, dry most of the year because of diversions, has been run occasionally by expert kayakers for many years. At high flows of between 11,000 and 15,000 cfs the entire river can be run. At lower flows of around 8,000 cfs the speed and size is reduced, but a river-wide hole that forms that must be portaged. You can hike the entire reach on the south side. Scout it, and make sure you can handle what is there! Video guide to the Milner Mile.


Under the terms of its federal license to operate the power plant (FERC Project 2899, License Article 415), Idaho Power is required to provide recreational flows annually for four weekend days, including the Memorial Day holiday. The flows occur from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. between April 1 and June 30, when inflow to the project, in excess of irrigation demands, is between 10,000 and 12,500 cubic feet per second (cfs). Boaters have to request these flows and should follow the directions on Idaho Power's Milner Whitewater Information page. Here are the primary details:
*A whitewater release request must be made before 3 p.m. (MST) on the Friday before the requested weekend day.
*A whitewater release request will occur only if there is sufficient water available and if requests for a given weekend day include at least two boaters.
*A minimum of two boaters must check in at the Milner Power Plant before a requested release will be provided.
*To verify a whitewater release, requesters must call the 800 number above before 3 p.m. MST on the Friday before the requested weekend day. The request will be counted as one release day if sufficient water was available and no cancellation was made.
*The 1.6-mile stretch of river between the dam and the power plant is a Class V-level whitewater rapid, recommended only for experts when flows exceed 10,000 cfs.



StreamTeam Status: Not Verified
Last Updated: 2011-05-25 13:52:03


Rapid Descriptions

icon of message No rapids entered. If you know names, and locations of the rapids please contact and advise the StreamTeam member for this run.

User Comments

Users can submit comments.
November 8 2002 (5919 days ago)
David GarrityDetails
Recommended levels = 12k to 15k according to Amaral. Scouted it 10k and there's a nasty keeper hole
of death part way down.
July 24 2002 (6026 days ago)
Stephen HuntDetails
Um... I haven't run this section and I probably never will get up that way, but I have a hard time
imagining that the cfs levels recommended (low=12cfs high=15cfs as of 23jul2002) are accurate.

Associated Projects

  • Milner Whitewater (ID)
    AW supports the efforts of local paddlers who have advocated for whitewater recreation on the Milner Mile.