Gauge Description:The cited USGS gauge is for the Snake near Pine City. While this gauge is well downstream, a very rough approximation of the level for the run can be had by subtracting 2' from the real time reading of this gauge. Or, comparing drainage at the put-in to at the gauge, expect this reach to be (very roughly) 1/5 the flow at the gauge.
The boater's gauge is on the bridge at the takeout. Below about 1.5 feet you might end up getting out to walk on occasion. A level of 3' is just about perfect. Above 4' the river is pretty much washed out.
The river should be at or near 'banks-full' at the put-in (Silver Star Road) for good paddling. Normally this happens only in early spring or after a significant rainfall.
There is a link to river levels on the MN DNR web page mentioned below. These readings are submitted by volunteers, thus are often not up to date. The first of the reports - Ford Township Bridge - is the one to use. Note that the readings are dated.
|SNAKE RIVER NEAR PINE CITY, MN|
|usgs-05338500||3.50 - 6.00 ft||I-III||00h33m||3.37 ft (too low)|
|Likely low. Marginal (scrapey) whitewater.|
Gauge (974 sq.mi. drainage) is far downstream with lake/dam intervening. Flow here may be ~1/7th flow reading of gauge.