Missouri - Great Falls


Missouri, Montana, US

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Great Falls

Usual Difficulty II(V) (for normal flows)
Length 8 Miles

Great Falls


Great Falls



River Description

From a comment posted 2008-05-30:

The stretch of water below Morony dam offers a great day float for those interested in seeing a different part of the Missouri. There are two optional takeouts; one at Widow Coulee on Highwood Road (shorter float but longer shuttle) or at Carter Ferry. I've floated this stretch several times and love it.

Right when you put on you want to get river right to catch the nice class II run, but watch out for a couple ledges that could surprise you. It's a very short time before you get to Belt Creek, you'll see a high grass ridge jetting quickly to a huge wave at med-high  flows. Even though it's only a 30-50 yd stretch, the wave there is sweet and offers great play.

After another 2 miles of swift Class II you'll come upon the ledge. This is the stopping point for a motorized craft downstream, and at med-high flows is pretty sweet.

Be sure to scout and scramble up the hill to see a Lewis and Clark marker commemorating their portage. Running the ledge is possible through the tongue. For those not interested, the line is river left.

There is also another sweet play wave right above this ledge at med-high flows, and a sneak line hugging the right cliff. Another 2 miles of II's and you're at Widow Coulee (look for an outhouse) or another 5 miles or so to Carter.


StreamTeam Status: Not Verified
Last Updated: 2008-05-31 04:52:18

Rapid Summary

Mile Rapid Name Class Features (Legend)
0.0Great Falls Rainbow FallsIV+Waterfall Photo
0.0Great Falls Mighty MOWaterfall Photo

Rapid Descriptions

Great Falls Rainbow Falls (Class IV+)

Great Falls

Great Falls


Great Falls Mighty MO

Great Falls

Great Falls



User Comments

Users can submit comments.
May 30 2008 (3556 days ago)
Dustin PrinzingDetails
The stretch of water below Morony dam offers a great day float for those intersted in seeing a
different part of the Missouri. There are two optional takeouts; one at Widow Coulee on the
Highwood road (shorter float but longer shuttle) or at the Carter ferry. Ive floated this stretch
several times and love it. Right when you put on you want to get river right to catch the nice
class II run, but watch out for a couple ledges that could surprise you. Its a very short time
before you get to Belt Creek , youll see a high grass ridge jetting quickly to a huge wave at
med-high flows. Even though its only a 30-50 yd stretch, the wave there is sweet and offers great
play. After another 2 miles of swift Class II youll come upon the ledge. This is the stopping point
for a motorized craft downstream , and at med-high flows is pretty sweet. Be sure to scout and
scramble up the hill to see a Lewis and Clark marker commerating their portage. Running the ledge
is possible through the tongue. For those not interested the line is river left. there is also
another sweet play wave right above this ledge at med-high flows, and a sneak line hugging the
right cliff. Another 2 miles of II's and your to Widow Coulee (look for an outhouse) or another 5
miles or so to Carter.
August 24 2006 (4202 days ago)
x (1)
From Eric Vincent<br />
<br />
The second picture is mislabeled as "Great Falls", it is actually Black Eagle Falls.
There is a really nice wave hole and surf wave that lie just down stream (30 yards) of that pic.
The dam/falls Great Falls is about 5 miles downstream. Below the last dam in the area, Morony Dam,
there is a four mile stretch of class II (III) water. Great play where Belt Creek comes in, and a
pretty large, sticky hole 1/2 mile downstream
March 24 2004 (5084 days ago)
Shawn BakerDetails
Tailrace Rapids is pretty fun--it is just off of the far right side of the 'Great Falls Mighty MO'
photo. Climb down the embankment in the left side of the photo, paddle across the river visible in
the lower part of the photo, and enter through the eddy at the bottom of the tailrace. Don't
trespass on the Montana Power/dam land--Great Falls boaters have done a pretty good job of
maintaining a good relationship with the corporate neighbors--don't ruin it for them! I paddled it
last spring at about 6,000cfs, and it was pretty fun. Locals can probably provide better beta;
tailrace flows will vary with the amount of power generated. Check in with Bighorn Wilderness
Outfitters downtown for good information, too.
July 14 2003 (5338 days ago)
wreevesDetails
I took a look at the map for this run and there are some steep creeks falling into this gorge. Also
it appears as if there was a mile long rapid below the next dam near sulfur springs see
http://www.topozone.com/map.asp?z=12&n=5270663&e=495950&s=25&size=l&u=1


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