Description: This fine playhole was first probed for its' fun potential back in the 80's with the big boats. At that time, many nasty swims occurred due to the nature of paddling in those long forgotten days. Today it is being played in by intermediate paddlers that have good rolls. Swims still occur here especially at the sticky levels. Although the 'dog makes its appearance below 12,000 cfs, it is generally not in its' prime till it is above 15000.
Dead-dog was named by a couple of Idaho paddlers who came out to play here, only to discover the broken, deceased carcass of a poor dog that got thrown off the bridge directly overhead. Pity for the dog, great name for this spot! Just remember that dead dogs can bite!
The hole is formed by the river flowing over an immense slab of rock near the second bridge abuttment. The hole is typically 15-20 feet wide or wider depending on flow and has a glassy smooth entrance with a high backwash. The eddy behind the hole is a self feeder right into the hole at certain levels, which makes wet exit and self rescue somewhat difficult at those sticky levels, but also provides an easy elevator ride back in for another go at it!
From surfer's left, the hole has its' apex and this is the sticky spot. The middle and right provide the most fun with the hole cresting into a wave on boater's right.
This was the site for Otter-Sports first rodeo in 1999. Due to the uneven nature of flows, it has been difficult to schedule another rodeo here. Some years, the 'dog never even gets to bare its' teeth!
Put-in, take-out: Take the stateline exit off I-90 and go north. Cross the river and parking is on the east (upriver) side. Scout from the parking area or directly over the hole from the bridge.
Local "expert": Mick "Holehog" French McHolehog
Levels of fun:12,000 cfs - low, slow water ledge hole
15,000 cfs - medium, faster, side surf, enders, spins, carts
17,500 cfs - medium+, more powerful, faster and starts to get sticky.
20,000 cfs - medium++, steeper, stickier, lots of stunts
25,000 cfs - high, big and powerful, steep and sticky harder to get back into once washed out
>25,000 cfs - Need to make effort to get back to. Worth it!
Permits are not required for this reach.
We have no additional detail on this route.
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Dead Dog at ~23,000
Corbin Park Wave
"Slicin' n Dicin'"
Two to Tango with the 'Dog
Probing a Dead Dog
Playing with the Dead Dog
Post Blunt Spray
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.
On June 18th the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission issued a new 50 year license for several dams on the Spokane River, near Spokane Washington and Post Falls Idaho. The license is based on several years of intense negotiations between the power company, tribes, agencies, and non-governmental organizations. Spokane Canoe and Kayak Club, Northwest Whitewater Association, and American Whitewater were involved on behalf of paddlers. The results of the new license are significant, and paddlers will certainly notice some positive changes in the not too distant future.
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