Flathead River Patrol Reports

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Note: Be aware that river conditions can change rapidly depending on weather and other factors. These condition reports are for reference only, and are not authoritative guides.

Cubic Feed per Second (CFS) and Water Depth are based on USGS Survey Stations near the river segment. Current stream-flow data can be found at NOAA's Advanced Hydrologic Prediction Service.

How to Read the Hydrograph

 

Middle Fork Flathead River

2022 Patrol Reports will be entered as patrols are completed, usually starting in mid-to-late June and early July.

Middle Fork CFS and Water Depth from the USGS Survey Station at West Glacier (123585000)

Date (2022) Put-In Take Out Length (mi.) Float Time (hrs) CFS Water Depth (ft) Observed Conditions
September 10 Moccasin Creek Blankenship 14.5 5.5 650 1.89
  • Water is clear with little to no debris present.
  • Most rocks and obstacles are exposed with many near the surface. Many rock bars are exposed.
  • Navigable channel is generally available. Heavy craft may need to be pushed in some sections. 
  • Stong hydraulic effects are still present in a few locations.
  • Seasonally flooded vegetation entirely exposed.
September 9 Blankenship House of Mystery 9.5 4.5 690 1.91
  • Water is clear with little to no debris present.
  • Some rocks and obstacles are exposed with many near the surface. Many rock bars are exposed.
  • Navigable channel is generally available. It is unlikely that craft will need to be pushed.
  • educed hydraulic effects. 
  • Seasonally flooded vegetation entirely exposed.
August 28 Blankenship House of Mystery 9.5 4.5 1,000 2.25
  • Water is clear with little to no debris present.
  • Some rocks and obstacles are exposed with many near the surface. Many rock bars are exposed.
  • Navigable channel is generally available. It is unlikely that craft will need to be pushed.
  • Reduced hydraulic effects. 
  • Seasonally flooded vegetation entirely exposed.
August 21 Moccasin Blankenship 14.5 5.5 1,100 2.33
  • Water is clear with little to no debris present.
  • Some rocks and obstacles are exposed with many near the surface. Many rock bars are exposed.
  • Navigable channel is generally available. It is unlikely that craft will need to be pushed.
  • Stong hydraulic effects are still present in a few locations.
  • Seasonally flooded vegetation entirely exposed.
August 20 Blankenship House of Mystery 9.5 4.5 1,070 2.31
  • Water is clear with little to no debris present.
  • Many rocks and obstacles are exposed. Many rock bars are exposed as well.
  • Navigable channel is generally available. It is unlikely that craft will need to be pushed.
  • Strong hydraulic effects are still present in a few locations.
  • Seasonally flooded vegetation entirely exposed.
August 19 Cascadilla West Glacier 16 5 1,010 2.3
  • Water is clear with little to no debris present.
  • Most rocks and obstacles are exposed. All rock bars are exposed.
  • Most craft will need to be pushed through some sections.
  • Portage may be required in some sections.
  • Very slow water with minimal hydraulic effects.
August 6 Moccasin Creek Blankenship 13.5 4 1,720 2.76
  • Water is clear with little to no debris present. 
  • Some rocks and obstacles are exposed with many near the surface. Most of the rock bars are exposed. 
  • Navigable channel generally available. 
  • Strong hydraulic effects and fast water are still present. 
  • Seasonally flooded vegetation entirely exposed.
August 5 Cascadilla West Glacier 16 4.5 1,850 2.84
  • Water is clear with little to no debris present. 
  • Many rocks and obstacles are exposed and most of the rock bars are exposed. 
  • Navigable channel generally available. 
  • Heavy craft may need to be pushed through some sections. 
  • Seasonally flooded vegetation entirely exposed.
  • Slow water with reduced hydraulic effects from Cascadilla to Moccasin Creek. 
  • Strong hydraulics and fast water are still present from Moccasin Creek to West Glacier. 
  • Numerous trees and strainers are present in the channels in the Nyack Flats log jams. Scouting is recommended and portaging may be required as the water continues to drop.
August 5 Essex Cascadilla 18 5 1,850 2.84
  • Water is clear with little to no debris present. 
  • Many rocks and obstacles are exposed and most of the rock bars are exposed. 
  • Navigable channel generally available. 
  • Heavy craft may need to be pushed through some sections. 
  • Seasonally flooded vegetation entirely exposed.
  • Slow water with reduced hydraulic effects. 
July 24 Bear Creek Paola 11.5 4.5 2,880 3.4
  • Water is clear with little to no debris present. 
  • Some rocks and obstacles are exposed with many near the surface. Most of the rock bars are exposed. 
  • Navigable channel generally available. 
  • Strong hydraulic effects in some locations. 
  • Seasonally flooded vegetation entirely exposed.
July 23 West Glacier House of Mystery 15 4 3,010 3.46
  • Water is clear with little to no debris present. 
  • Some rocks and obstacles are exposed with many near the surface. Most of the rock bars are exposed. 
  • Navigable channel generally available. 
  • Strong hydraulic effects in a few locations. 
  • Seasonally flooded vegetation entirely exposed. 
July 23 Cascadilla West Glacier 15 5 3,010 3.46
  • Water is clear with little to no debris present. 
  • Some rocks and obstacles are exposed with many near the surface. Most of the rock bars are exposed. 
  • Navigable channel generally available. 
  • Strong hydraulic effects in a few locations. 
  • Seasonally flooded vegetation entirely exposed. 
  • There is a large cottonwood blocking the left channel at RM 28.5, near the beginning of the Nyack Flats log jams. 
  • Numerous trees and strainers are present in the channels in the Nyack Flats log jams. Scouting is recommended and portaging may be required as the water continues to drop. 
July 10 Mocassin Creek Blankenship 14.5 3.5 7,410 4.91
  • Water is starting to clear, but still slightly murky. Some debris present.
  • There are few rocks & obstacles exposed. Some rock bars are exposed.
  • The water is fast with strong hydraulic effects in many locations.
  • Seasonally flooded vegetation is mostly exposed.
July 9 Bear Creek Paola 10.5 4 7,690 4.99
  • Water is starting to clear, but still slightly murky. Some debris present.
  • There are few rocks & obstacles exposed. Some rock bars are exposed.
  • The water is fast with strong hydraulic effects in some locations.
  • Seasonally flooded vegetation is mostly exposed.
July 8 Paola Cascadilla 11 3 7,860 5.04
  • Water is starting to clear, but still slightly murky. Some debris present.
  • There are some rocks & obstacles exposed. Some rock bars are exposed.
  • The water is fast with strong hydraulic effects in some locations.
  • Seasonally flooded vegetation is mostly exposed.
June 25 Bear Creek Cascadilla 24 4.5 14,000 6.77
  • Water is murky with debris present. 
  • There are very few rocks & obstacles exposed and all rock bars are covered. 
  • The water is very fast with strong hydraulic effects in many locations. 
  • Seasonally flooded vegetation is completely underwater.
June 19 West Glacier House of Mystery 15 3 19,000 8.21
  • Water is murky with debris present. 
  • There are very few rocks & obstacles exposed and all rock bars are covered. 
  • The water is very fast with strong hydraulic effects in many locations. 
  • Seasonally flooded vegetation is completely underwater.
June 18 Essex Cascadilla 18 4.25 19,000 8.17
  • Water is murky with debris present. 
  • There are very few rocks & obstacles exposed and all rock bars are covered. 
  • The water is very fast with strong hydraulic effects in many locations. 
  • Seasonally flooded vegetation is completely underwater.
June 17 Paola Cascadilla 12 2.25 14,300 6.9
  • Water is murky with debris present. 
  • There are very few rocks & obstacles exposed and all rock bars are covered. 
  • The water is very fast with strong hydraulic effects in many locations. 
  • Seasonally flooded vegetation is completely underwater.

 


 

North Fork Flathead River

2022 Patrol Reports will be entered as patrols are completed, usually starting in mid-to-late June and early July.

North Fork CFS and Water Depth from the USGS Survey Station at Columbia Falls (123555000)

Date (2022) Put-In Take Out Length (mi.) Float Time (hrs) CFS Water Depth (ft) Observed Conditions
September 4 Polebridge Coal Creek 9.5 3.5 1,040 2.27
  • Water is clear with little debris present. 
  • Most rocks and obstacles are exposed with many rocks near the surface of the water. Most rock bars are exposed. 
  • A navigable channel is generally present. Heavy craft may need to be pushed through some sections. 
  • Water is slow moving with reduced hydraulic effects.
September 4 Ford Polebridge 10 3 1,040 2.27

 

  • Water is clear with little debris present. 
  • Most rocks and obstacles are exposed with many rocks near the surface of the water. Most rock bars are exposed. 
  • A navigable channel is generally present. Heavy craft may need to be pushed through some sections. 
  • Water is slow moving with reduced hydraulic effects.
September 2 Coal Creek Big Creek 9.5 3.5 1,090 2.36
  • Water is clear with little debris present. 
  • Most rocks and obstacles are exposed with many rocks near the surface of the water. Most rock bars are exposed. 
  • A navigable channel is generally present. Heavy craft may need to be pushed through some sections. 
  • Water is slow moving with reduced hydraulic effects.
August 27 Great Northern Flats Blankenship 11 4 1,410 2.55
  • Water is clear with little debris present. 
  • Most rocks and obstacles are exposed with many rocks near the surface of the water. Most rock bars are exposed. 
  • A navigable channel is generally present. Heavy craft may need to be pushed through some sections. 
  • Water is slow moving with reduced hydraulic effects.
August 26 Ford Polebridge 10 3 1,440 2.56
  • Water is clear with little debris present. 
  • Most rocks and obstacles are exposed with many rocks near the surface of the water. Most rock bars are exposed. 
  • A navigable channel is generally present. Heavy craft may need to be pushed through some sections. 
  • Water is slow moving with reduced hydraulic effects.  
August 14 Big Creek Glacier Rim 11 3.5 1,580 2.68
  • Water is clear with little debris present. 
  • Some rocks and obstacles are exposed with many rocks near the surface of the water. Most rock bars are exposed. 
  • A navigable channel is generally present. Unlikely that craft will need to be pushed. 
  • Water is slow moving with strong hydraulic effects in some locations. 
August 14 Coal Creek Big Creek 9.5 3 1,580 2.68
  • Water is clear with little debris present. 
  • Many rocks and obstacles are exposed with many rocks near the surface of the water. Most rock bars are exposed. 
  • Heavy craft may need to be pushed through some sections. 
  • Water is slow moving and there are reduced hydraulic effects. 
August 13 Coal Creek Big Creek 9.5 3 1,620 2.71
  • Water is clear with little debris present. 
  • Many rocks and obstacles are exposed with many rocks near the surface of the water. Most rock bars are exposed. 
  • Heavy craft may need to be pushed through some sections. 
  • Water is slow moving and there are reduced hydraulic effects. 
August 13 Polebridge  Coal Creek 9.5 4 1,620 2.71
  • Water is clear with little debris present. 
  • Many rocks and obstacles are exposed with many rocks near the surface of the water. Most rock bars are exposed. 
  • Heavy craft may need to be pushed through some sections. 
  • Water is slow moving and there are reduced hydraulic effects. 
  • Between river mile 28 and 27, near Home Ranch Bottoms, a number of strainers and log jams are present but they present no significant navigational challenges.
August 12 Polebridge Coal Creek 9.5 5.5 1,700 2.74
  • Water is clear with little debris present. 
  • Many rocks and obstacles are exposed with many rocks near the surface of the water. Most rock bars are exposed. 
  • Heavy craft may need to be pushed through some sections. 
  • Water is slow moving and there are reduced hydraulic effects. 
  • Between river mile 28 and 27, near Home Ranch Bottoms, a number of strainers and log jams are present but they present no significant navigational challenges.
July 31 Polebridge Coal Creek 9.5 3 2,710 3.48
  • Water is clear with little debris present. 
  • Many rocks and obstacles are exposed with many rocks near the surface of the water. Most rock bars are exposed. 
  • Heavy craft may need to be pushed through some sections. 
  • Water is slow moving and there are reduced hydraulic effects. 
  • Between river mile 28 and 27, near Home Ranch Bottoms, a number of strainers and log jams are present but they present no significant navigational challenges.
July 31 Ford  Polebridge 10 4 2,710 3.48
  • Water is clear with little debris present. 
  • Many rocks and obstacles are exposed with many rocks near the surface of the water. Most rock bars are exposed. 
  • Heavy craft may need to be pushed through some sections. 
  • Water is slow moving and there are reduced hydraulic effects. 
July 30 Ford Polebridge 10 3 2,810 3.54
  • Water is clear with little debris present. 
  • Many rocks and obstacles are exposed with many rocks near the surface of the water. Most rock bars are exposed. 
  • Heavy craft may need to be pushed through some sections. 
  • Water is slow moving and there are reduced hydraulic effects. 
July 30 Border Ford 14 3.25 2,810 3.54
  • Water is clear with little debris present. 
  • Many rocks and obstacles are exposed with many rocks near the surface of the water. Most rock bars are exposed. 
  • Heavy craft may need to be pushed through some sections. 
  • Water is slow moving and there are reduced hydraulic effects. 
July 29 Coal Creek Great Northern Flats 14 4 2,850 3.56
  • Water is clear with little to no debris.
  • Some rocks and obsttacles are exposed with many rocks near the surface. Many rock bars are exposed.
  • Navigable channel generally available. It is unlikely that craft will need to be pushed.
  • Strong hydraulic effects in a few locations.
  • Seasonally flooded vegetation is entirely exposed.
July 17 Border Ford 14 3 4,780 4.56
  • Water is clear with little to no debris.
  • Some rocks and obsttacles are exposed with many rocks near the surface. Many rock bars are exposed.
  • Navigable channel generally available. It is unlikely that craft will need to be pushed.
  • Strong hydraulic effects in a few locations.
  • Seasonally flooded vegetation is entirely exposed.
July 16 Border Ford 14 3.5 5,090 4.7
  • Water is clear with little to no debris.
  • Some rocks and obsttacles are exposed with many rocks near the surface. Many rock bars are exposed.
  • Navigable channel generally available. It is unlikely that craft will need to be pushed.
  • Strong hydraulic effects in a few locations.
  • Seasonally flooded vegetation is entirely exposed.
July 15 Polebridge Coal Creek 9.5 2.5 5,370 4.83
  • Water is clear with little to no debris.
  • Some rocks and obsttacles are exposed with many rocks near the surface. Many rock bars are exposed.
  • Navigable channel generally available. It is unlikely that craft will need to be pushed.
  • Strong hydraulic effects in a few locations.
  • Seasonally flooded vegetation is entirely exposed.
  • Between river mile 28 and 27, near Home Ranch Bottoms, a number of strainers and log jams are present but they present no significant navigational challenges.
July 15 Coal Creek Big Creek 10 2.5 5,370 4.83
  • Water is clear with little to no debris.
  • Some rocks and obsttacles are exposed with many rocks near the surface. Many rock bars are exposed.
  • Navigable channel generally available. It is unlikely that craft will need to be pushed.
  • Stong hydraulic effects in a few locations.
  • Seasonally flooded vegetation is entirely exposed.
July 3 Ford Polebridge 11 1.5 8,740 6.13
  • Water is starting to clear, but still slightly murky. Some debris present.
  • There are few rocks & obstacles exposed. Some rock bars are exposed.
  • The water is fast with strong hydraulic effects in some locations.
  • Seasonally flooded vegetation is mostly exposed.
July 2 Border Ford 14 3 8,710 6.12
  • Water is starting to clear, but still slightly murky. Some debris present.
  • There are few rocks & obstacles exposed. Some rock bars are exposed.
  • The water is fast with strong hydraulic effects in some locations.
  • Seasonally flooded vegetation is mostly exposed.
July 1 Great Northern Flats Blankenship 11 2.5 9,220 6.31
  • Water is starting to clear, but still slightly murky. Some debris present.
  • There are few rocks & obstacles exposed. Some rock bars are exposed.
  • The water is fast with strong hydraulic effects in some locations.
  • Seasonally flooded vegetation is mostly exposed.
June 26 Coal Creek Great Northern Flats 13.5 3.5 10,900 6.89
  • Water is murky with debris present. 
  • There are very few rocks & obstacles exposed and all rock bars are covered. 
  • The water is very fast with strong hydraulic effects in many locations. 
  • Seasonally flooded vegetation is completely underwater.
  • A number of log jams and strainers are present in this stretch but they present no significant navigational challenges. 
June 24 Ford Polebridge 10 1.5 14,600 8.0
  • Water is murky with debris present. 
  • There are very few rocks & obstacles exposed and all rock bars are covered. 
  • The water is very fast with strong hydraulic effects in many locations. 
  • Seasonally flooded vegetation is completely underwater.
June 5 Big Creek Blankenship 15 3 12,700 7.45
  • Water is murky with debris present. 
  • There are very few rocks & obstacles exposed and all rock bars are covered. 
  • The water is very fast with strong hydraulic effects in many locations. 
  • Seasonally flooded vegetation is completely underwater. 
  • The main channel is partially blocked by a strainer on river left at river mile 8.5. 
June 4 Great Northern Flats Blankenship 11 2 10,900 6.87
  • Water is murky with debris present. 
  • There are very few rocks & obstacles exposed and all rock bars are covered. 
  • The water is very fast with strong hydraulic effects in many locations. 
  • Seasonally flooded vegetation is completely underwater.
  • The main channel is partially blocked by a strainer on river left at river mile 8.5.