Flathead, Middle Fork - 3. Moccasin Creek to West Glacier

Flathead, Middle Fork, Montana, US


3. Moccasin Creek to West Glacier

Usual Difficulty III+ (for normal flows)
Length 7 Miles
Avg. Gradient 18 fpm

MF Flathead

MF Flathead
Photo of Shawn Metts by Shawn Metts @ 1100cfs

Gauge Information

Name Range Difficulty Updated Level
M F Flathead River near West Glacier MT
usgs-12358500 1000 - 8000 cfs III+ 00h42m 775 cfs (too low)

River Description

This section of the Wild and Scenic Middle Fork of the Flathead River boasts a long season, great moderate whitewater, and beautiful scenery and water quality. It can be paddled spring through fall, and except at May-June high flows is an outstanding intermediate whitewater run. River right is Glacier National Park, and river left is the Flathead National Forest. Commercial rafting opportunities are available based out of West Glacier.

Named rapids on the run are, in order: Tunnel, Bonecrusher, Washboard, Big Squeeze, Jaws, Pinball, Repeater, The Notch, and Pumphouse. Expect swirly eddies, some fun surf waves, and good pools between rapids.  

Put in at the well-signed Moccasin Creek access area along Highway 2. To reach the Take Out turn off of Highway 2 to enter West Glacier, and take the first righthand turn after you go under the railroad (about 1/4 mile). That small road will lead upstream along river left and shortly end at the historic Belton Bridge. If you are rafting you'll want to find another take-out as it is a short but steep trail to your car. If you are running the Middle Fork as a multi-day, camping and privacy are better in other reaches. 

As with all rivers, please clean, drain and dry your boat before paddling the Middle Fork to protect its outstanding water quality from aquatic invasive species. 

Paddlers Preventing Aquatic Invasive Species from American Whitewater on Vimeo.

Permit Information

No Permit Required

StreamTeam Status: Not Verified
Last Updated: 2018-03-21 14:01:38

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.
July 27 2007 (4134 days ago)
x (1)
new online whitewater guide for montana area paddling - check it out!

Do more than just check gauges; join over 5,000 AW members today.

Or, consider donating


  • Wild River

    Letter from John Craighead on the issue of dams and the need for wild rivers.