This photo needs editing.
Difficulty II-III
Length 19 Miles
Gauge N/A
Flow Range N/A
Flow Rate as of: 1 second ago N/A
Reach Info Last Updated 03/24/2009 10:12 pm

River Description


See also Monarch to Riceville.

 

Belt Creek is a nice class II (III) roadside run that typically is boatable from May-June, depending on snow melt and spring rains. Putting in at Neihart allows you some great class II (III) boogie water that is pretty much continuous for 12 miles or so. There's not a lot of time to enjoy the scenery as the rocks are all around you; this is one run where a bomb proof brace may out weigh a bomb proof roll. Watch out for some low fences and at least one low bridge that forces you to lay on the back of your boat to clear it. From time to time there are strainers that pop up, but as of May 29, 2008 there is only one from Neihart to the St. Thomas camp that has to be portaged. From Monarch through Sluice Boxes the river boxes in with sheer walls on both sides. I haven't run this section before, but friends of mine just got off of it this weekend at flood stage and said there are good size boil lines, reactionary waves, no eddies, and some pretty wacky water along the way. One member of the group flipped and smacked his nose on a rock--result, nine stitches and a pretty messed-up looking face.

 

Class rating from MT DFWP water_char field in rec.db
Lat/longitude coordinates of the putin are a SWAG.

Rapid Descriptions

Comments

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9 years ago

UPDATE: As of 2-24-2009 the log accross Belt Creek approx1-2 miles below Neihart has been partially removed. This has cleared an opening on the river right. Still a very dangerous log, so portaging still might be a good idea. Hopefully more of the log will be removed by the end of March.

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10 years ago

Just floated from Neihart down to a mile above the lazy doe yesterday. Water was roaring. We had two IKs and one inflatable canoe. Great float. Only one flip the whole time. Water was moving fast so we had time to make two runs. There is one portage cant miss it but be ready because there are basically no places to eddy out. Just smash into shore and grab some branches. I grew up in great falls and i have been waiting to float this section for years. Not many people float here which makes it feel like your own river.

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10 years ago

As one of the people that just paddled the monarch to sluice box section, I will say it was a blast. It was unfortunate that our buddy messed up his face. The section involves some boulder drop class II-III rapids just outside of monarch. One of the rapids has some van size boulders in it. I was impressed. Once we passed logging creek (half way point and possible alternate put in/take out) the canyon walls narrow. In one place there is a 3/4 mile section with no option to stretch your legs, if you swim you're swimming the whole way. The water was class III. As far as I know the canyon walls are not undercut, but I have not seen it at low water (possible higher consequence when swimming this section). Everying is read and run. We encountered no wood through the canyon (sluice box) sections. There are strainers in the upper sections. There are old bridge pillars through the entire stretch making for a couple interesting moves. There was one really great surf wave closer to monarch. probably not in at lower flows. There is no gage measuring flow. For us the water was at high water line on the river banks flowing into the willows along the banks. Hope the information helps. I plan to be back soon. I think this will be a fun rafting section.

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10 years ago

Belt Creek is a nice class II (III) roadside run that typically is boatable from May-June, depending on snow melt and spring rains. Putting in at Neihart allows you some great class II (III) boogie water that is pretty much continuous for 12 miles or so. There's not a lot of time to enjoy the scenery as the rocks are all around you; this is one run where a bomb proof brace may out weigh a bomb proof roll. Watch out for some low fences and at least one low bridge that forces you to lay on the back of your boat to clear it. From time to time there are strainers that pop up, but as of May 29, 2008 there is only one from Neihart to the St. Thomas camp that has to be portaged. From Monarch through Sluice Boxes the river boxes in with sheer walls on both sides. I haven't run this section before, but friends of mine just got off of it this weekend at flood stage and said there are good size boil lines, reactionary waves, no eddies, and some pretty wacky water along the way. One member of the group flipped and smacked his nose on a rock--result, nine stitches and a pretty messed-up looking face.

No Gage

Gauge Description


Dave Amman reports that there appears to be a dependable relationship between the Smith below Eagle Creek and historic gauges on Belt Creek at Riceville Bridge.    Find the flow reported by the USGS gauge at the bottom of the page then use Dave's table to find the likely flow in Belt Creek at Riceville.

 

Belt Creek Flow Table

 

If the USGS graph is showing feet instead of cfs, click on the link on the right side for the gauge homepage.   The homepage shows both stage and cfs.

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Directions Description


We have no additional detail on this route. Use the map below to calculate how to arrive to the main town from your zipcode.

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No Accident Reports

Alerts

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