Little Beaver, Washington, US
River Mile 3 to Ross Reservoir
||IV-V (for normal flows)
Another backcountry kayak run in the North Cascades accessible as a hike in from the shores of
The first two miles consist of braided channels, and a few log jams. Expect some of the jams to
require a portage while others are possible to limbo under.
After the first two miles you will reach “The Beaver Tail,” the first significant
rapid at the start of the gorge. This rapid consists of a sloping ten foot slide, then a ramp
that propels you to the top of an eight-foot slide into a beautiful pool.
After the “Beaver Tail” the creek just gets better. A couple of class IV+ rapids that
require a bit of scouting led you to “Little Beaver Falls”. Plan to scout this clean
The whitewater continues and soon you reach the “Beaver Whip,” a river-wide slide
into a marginally sticky hole. More water would pack a bit more punch.
Anticipate a challenging portage when you arrive at the “Beaver Lodge,” a scary 18
foot waterfall with a nasty undercut on the left side. The undercut is just large enough for a
boat and passenger. Most of the outflow from the waterfall surges directly into the pocket making
a complex portage the best option. Rig the ropes and pulleys to portage boats around the cliff
wall to the left.
After this drop you still have 3/4 mile to go before reaching the reservoir. The rapids continue
in a beautiful bedrock gorge all the way to the reservoir with great read-and-run drops,
bordering on class IV to V in difficulty.
Adapted from a trip report on Exploring Little Beaver that was posted on the Bellingham
Whitewater page back in 2007.
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Last Updated: 2018-01-24 16:26:46