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.

Gauge Information

Name Range Difficulty Updated Level
SNAKE RIVER NEAR PINE CITY, MN
usgs-05338500 3.50 - 6.00 ft I-III 00h33m 3.37 ft (too low)
gauge class 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.
gauge graph
RangeWater LevelDifficultyComment
0.00 -3.00 ft extremely Low-somewhat Low I-III gauge is important or has warning Likely too low for whitewater. May be a flatwater paddle with shoals to scrape or carry.
3.00 -3.50 ft somewhat Low-barely Low I-III gauge is important or has warning Likely low. Marginal (scrapey) whitewater.
3.50 -4.25 ft barely runnable-med runnable I-III gauge is important or has warning Likely low-boatable flows.
4.25 -5.00 ft med runnable-a bit pushy runnable I-III gauge is important or has warning Likely good ('optimum') boatable range.
5.00 -6.00 ft a bit pushy runnable-high runnable I-III gauge is important or has warning Likely high boatable range.
6.00 -7.00 ft somewhat High-somewhat High I-III gauge is important or has warning Reportedly 'washes out' at these flows.
7.00 -12.00 ft somewhat High-extremely High I-III gauge is important or has warning Unusually high flows. Generally washed-out. Not recommended. Caution is urged.

Reports give the public a chance to report on river conditions throughout the country as well as log the history of a river.

When River/Gauge Subject Level Reporter
6y32d01h46m /Snake-A) Silver Star Rd to Township Rd [MN] staff gauge on Olympic Street bridge 4.25 ft Kirsten Frickle