Yampa - 04. 85 Rd to Deer Lodge Park Rd

Yampa, Colorado, US


04. 85 Rd to Deer Lodge Park Rd (Cross Mountain Gorge)

Usual Difficulty IV(V) (for normal flows)
Avg. Gradient 59 fpm
Max Gradient 67 fpm

Cross Mountain Gorge - Snake Pit

Cross Mountain Gorge - Snake Pit
Photo of Zach Hensley by Bryan Houle taken 03/21/04 @ 1200 cfs

Gauge Information

Name Range Difficulty Updated Level
usgs-09251000 700 - 5000 cfs IV(V) 63d07h51m 206 cfs (too low)

River Description

Latitude / Longitude data very approximate.

"Rioter" said, on Boater Talk, "I've never been on the water in Cross above about 4500 cfs. It's a solid IV at this level with some must-make moves. I've also paddled it as low as 300 cfs and it wasn't great (III-), but hey it's Cross! Just beware that Cross has a short season and when it starts to go it goes. I know some people that have hit it at high water (Barry Smith claims he has run it at 17,000 if my memory is correct). For me, I like it best around 2,000-2,500 cfs."

StreamTeam Status: Not Verified
Last Updated: 2017-07-09 21:02:48


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.
February 23 2017 (697 days ago)
adammayo (158870)
The proper gauge is Yampa below Maybell:
https://waterdata.usgs.gov/co/nwis/uv/?site_no=09251000&PARAmeter_cd=00065,00060 The Deerlodge
gauge is below the confluence with Little Snake, which is about 25% of the flow.
September 30 2014 (1574 days ago)
Clydej5525 (156070)
I believe there was a death about 1952 or so as we found a canoe made from an airplane tank beat up
and abandoned on a sand bank in Deep Park about that time. We did not run Cross mountain but put in
below. Clyde Jones
April 24 2005 (5020 days ago)
Christof StorkDetails
I'm surprised there isn't more info on this run. It's truly a great run. Pretty, lots of action, no
flat water.

Note the following:
1) This run changes a lot with the water level.
2) There is some danger--mostly with undercut rocks and possible sieves at Snake Pit.
3) You probably want to scout the top down to Snake Pit. I think it gets easier after Snake
4) This run is class V only at high water. At 2000 cfs, it's class IV. Hitting the lines at Snake
Pit at 2000 cfs are actually pretty easy, but some danger exists.
5) At around 2000 cfs, lots of people come here. You'll always have others to run shuttle on

I'm curious if anyone has died in this section. So many people run it, even in rafts that have real
trouble, that if it were really dangerous, there should be some deaths.

I've heard there is a "death ferry" in this run, but it wasn't there at 2000 cfs. I'd
like more info.

Associated Projects

  • Basin Non-Consumptive Needs Assesments (CO)
    AW is working to define stream-flows that meet recreational boating needs across Colorado. In both the Colorado and Yampa River Basin's, AW has helped develop baseline data for whitewater recreation
  • Yampa River (CO)
    AW is working to preserve the free-flowing character of the Yampa River, while multiple interests set their sights on the Yampa as a new source for clean, high quality water supplies for Oil and Gas d