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Difficulty I-II
Length 0.1 Miles
Gauge Apple River in Somerset (Approximation)
Flow Range 250 - 1000 CFS
Flow Rate as of: 30 minutes ago ~ 479.562 [CFS] ℹ️
Reach Info Last Updated 06/10/2019 10:06 pm

River Description

This section of river is most 'famous' for tubing. In summer, hoards of people lazily float butt-down in inner-tubes, through the riffles and rapids on this river. Located between two dams and flowages, power generation supplies adequate flow for this entertainment.

Boaters may enjoy these same rapids, but don't expect anything near a 'pristine' experience. It may be best to take advantage of the 'off-season' (tubers generally operate from Memorial Day through Labor day). Occasional high-water (rain events) during summer may also be enjoyed, though it may be best to plan put-in either very early or very late to miss the mass of floaters who may clog the river midday (assuming warm enough weather to suit them).

Jeff Bolte adds: This is the end of the popular tubing run. Go there in April and May when there are no tubes. If you must go there in June, get there around 7:30 pm when most of the tubers should be gone for the day. Get paddling clothes on before you arrive. There will be mosquitoes. All the whitewater is in a village park. The rapids itself is maybe 250 yards long with a mostly featureless mid section. There's good deep flatwater above the rapids to warm up and roll in. You can carry up and run this stretch repeatedly, catching all the little eddies, working fast water ferries, and there's a couple waves to play on. As a local slalom racer, that's why I like this run. (The popular Buttercup Series of slalom races begin their season here every May on Mother's Day weekend.)

The entry has a classic tongue into standing waves. Shallow water can be an issue. I have rolled a kayak below the waves and had my helmet clicking off the bottom as I got set up. (Some years back, a 'tuber' drowned in this first wave-set from a foot entrapment.) A few eddies exist along the left bank but it's essentially featureless until the highway bridge 100 yards down. Under the highway bridge and down to the footbridge, the river narrows and has one-boat-eddies on the left, and a rock forms a small hole left-center. The river squeezes under the footbridge and forms a wave train in a deep pool. There are small active eddies left and right. The first wave is the largest, the second is also stable enough to hold a surf. The rest surge and are soft. There's plenty of depth at this point for rolling or swimming. The pool shallows out quickly and flows fast. There are small eddies and rocks widely spread for the next 300 yards downriver in the village park.

Rapid Descriptions

Drainage: 545 sq.mi.

Class - N/A Mile - 0
Rapid Thumbnail Missing

Drainage area at our listed put-in is approximately 545 sq.mi. (as calculated via USGS StreamStats Beta software).

The USGS gauge on the Willow River lies just over 8 miles to the SSW. Drainage at that gauge is 292 square miles.

Based on relative drainage areas, flow on the Apple River in Somerset *could* be 1.866 times that gauge reading, so our virtual gauge uses that value to *attempt* to represent *likely* flows here. Correlation is not assured, thus must be confirmed by on-site inspection of this run.


Gage Descriptions

Visual inspection at the footbridge. If the first wave is up, go for it. A medium level would be the footbridge wave at two feet. I have seen that wave at four feet, which floods out most everything else on the upper end of this run. Water quality is generally good and quite clear up to bank full.

Directions Description

In the village of Somerset, drive north on County Road I (I, as in Ida) until you see the ball field lights on the right. Turn right, following the snowmobile trail sign, and continue past the ball park down to the river. Park below the rapids and carry up to the head of the rapids.

No Accident Reports




Matt Muir




Revision #Revision DateAuthorComment
1193893 11/24/08 n/a n/a
1212817 06/10/19 Rob updated description
1212818 06/10/19 Rob directions to the river