Professor Paddle: Nooksack Falls ROR
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Fry1982
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  Quote Fry1982 Replybullet Topic: Nooksack Falls ROR
    Posted: 05 Aug 2013 at 9:11pm
Does anyone have info on the current state of the run of river at Nooksack Falls? I was under the impression it wasn't in use anymore, which was obviously not the case today when a few of us were down there! Does anybody know optimal flows for this section based on the online gauge and how much water is diverted?

Thanks!

Adam
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Force
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  Quote Force Replybullet Posted: 06 Aug 2013 at 11:22pm
Pretty sure there is not a diversion above the falls. One has been discussed in the past by PSE but never permitted. If misto was really low it more likely that most/significant flow is coming from Wells Creek below the falls.
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Fry1982
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  Quote Fry1982 Replybullet Posted: 07 Aug 2013 at 10:13pm
Not misto, from the base of the falls down...we passed the powerhouse less than a mile downstream of the falls
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justin
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  Quote justin Replybullet Posted: 08 Aug 2013 at 3:05pm
Most folks don't run from the bottom of the falls.  Most Bham boaters put in about a mile or two upstream from the Doug Fir Campground, I believe the second gravel pullout.  At least for the horseshoe bend stretch.  I'd be curious to hear more about what you found up there.
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Fry1982
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  Quote Fry1982 Replybullet Posted: 08 Aug 2013 at 4:44pm
Yeah Horseshoe Bend is a regular for us as well seeing as it's only a 30-45 minute drive away from Abbotsford, or less than an hour from Chilliwack.

There is a relatively painless route to river level at the falls area and you can see the first rapid. I had told a friend about it who went in and (supposedly) ran the entire stretch when it was about 1400 cfs on the gauge, one person had one portage only. We went in the other day at 900 cfs on the gauge or so and much of the lines were sieved out, we ran the first and final rapids but much of the middle part really didn't look appealing, lots of sieves and wood, guess it needs the extra 500 cfs... After the final rapid is the powerhouse which was diverting a decent amount, maybe 350-400 cfs? Then the long braided flatwater to horseshoe bend. I took a few pics down there but not many, portaging was challenging, though it would really suck to portage the first rapid. I estimate the run was maybe 1/4 to 1/2 mile long of class V from the falls to the powerhouse. The powerhouse is clearly from the diversion shortly above the falls where you see the penstock by the parking area. A quick google search tells that it is still diverting, there was a decent amount of equipment on site as well.

As a bonus a short but difficult hike upstream at river level gets you a clear view of Nooksack Falls. Wells Creek had decent water in it, but wasn't cranking.
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