Professor Paddle Professor Paddle
  RegisterRegister  LoginLogin
Home Calendar Forum FSBO Gallery PPages Reviews Rivers Trips Links

Your IP has been logged and your request has been sent to a moderator
Skykomish    1 - Index/Powerline to Railroad Bridge™ ©
Class III+(IV+)
4.5Miles
Play Rating (1-10): 7
River Mapplet
GPS/GIS Maps
Put In Longitude : -121.56578 Putin
Put In Latitude : 47.8042484
Take Out Longitude : -121.61569 Take Out
Take Out Latitude : 47.8291016
County : Snohomish Shuttle
   Gauge Information (Professor Paddle updated levels from SKYKOMISH RIVER NEAR GOLD BAR at 8/16/2017 11:35:32 AM)
Gauge Forecast Height Current Flow Authority Physical Update
SKYKOMISH RIVER NEAR GOLD BAR NWRFC | FC Page 4.47  679 cfs  USGS - NWIS 08-16-2017 10:30:00
Minimum Recomended Level:  1000 cfs     Maximum Recomended Level:  15000 cfs 

  Access

There are some long standing, sensitive access issues between locals and boaters. DO NOT put in at the base of Sunset Falls. Currently this access point is closed. Please do not put in there. Residents and land owners have made complaints and will have vehicles towed and fined.

Be cool in Index. Avoid poaching private property. If you don't know, be friendly and ask. Wave Trek may grant you access but you need to ask them personally.

Split Rock: This place can be a zoo sometimes. Try to avoid unnecessary shinanigans on HWY 2. There's a lot of traffic and we could permanently lose access if ever there was an accident related to boaters playing "frogger". Split Rock is private property. Avoid parking on the river side of the HWY, and pick up a little litter if you see some. Do your part.


  Putin Details

There are two commonly used Put-Ins for this run. Cable Drop on the South Fork Sky is used during lower flows. At Hwy 2 mile 35.1 (just west of the bridge across the Skykomish) take FR 6020 0.4 miles to a parking area underneath a big powerline tower. A trail a short distance upstream of the parking area leads down to the river at a point just upstream of Cable Drop Rapid. At higher flows, people generally Put In in the town of Index on the North Fork. Access can be found on R. Left under the railroad bridge, or you could ask Wave Trek if you can use their private Put In on R. Right. Derfinitely Don't put in here without permission, though. Sometimes in the past they've asked paddlers to sign a awiver.) Downstream at Llama Ledges, less than a mile south of Index on R. Right there is Forest Service land you can use. Sometimes there are sketchy "home steader folks here though. You can also Put In at the confluence of the North and South forks at the Hwy 2 bridge (mile 35.1 on R. Left). Its Forest Service land.


  Takeout Details

The railroad bridge over the Skykomish at Highway 2 mile 32.5 (elevation 295í) is used by many as a take out for this section, or as a Put In from "Railroad" to Big Eddy. But its a steep hike in or out. There is a parking area on the north side of Highway 2 with enough space for a half dozen cars (more if you get creative). There have been occasional problems with breakins to shuttle vehicles. Most boaters use the pull off a few hundred yards upstream where the road is closer to the river at Split Rock (Highway 2 mile 32.9). Others, including rafters, takeout at the fishing access downstream (Highway 2 mile 30.4). If you plan on taking out at Split Rock, be respectful to the property owner, and park on the southside of HWY 2. If you see trash pick it up like a good steward, even if its not yours. Try to avoid playing "Frogger" too much on HWY 2. Be as low profile as possible. We may be one accident away from being shut down here. Respect.


 River Alerts   ( Add Alert ) Pinned Forum Threads
 On the left channel below cable drop at the confluence is a channel-wide log in play at 2500; take the right side and its good to go. - Posted by: joshcrossman on 11/29/2015 10:49:00 PM -  [Remove Alert]

 On the North Fork where the wood piles up and the river bends left, a huge tree has fallen and nearly crosses the entire stream. At 1670cfs, it was manditory portage, and a most vicious strainer if you got in it. This wasn''t there a couple weeks ago. - Posted by: Matt Haverly on 12/26/2016 1:59:00 PM -  [Remove Alert]

TopicForum
Halloween Throwdown | Nov 2Events
The Dawg Paddle**Tomorrow**Events

Features on this run

Feature Name Class
Llama Ledges III+
Cable Drop III
Garbage III
Anderson Hole III
Boulder drop IV+
The Wier III+
Bonsai III
Lunch Hole III+
Aquagasam III
Climax Wave III+
Split Rock Wave II+
Add a Feature | Re-Order Features

  Other Issues

LEVELS: The has been run as a very wide range of flows, from as low as 350, which it only reaches in drought years to over 60K (flooding).

400-1000: Low Low, but still fun. At these levels kayakers can easily break boulder drop down into 3 separate sections. Very low for rafts
1000-2000: Low, but very fun. Different lines start opening up in boulder drop. Entrance to BD is tight for rafts still.
2000-3000: Medium low, lines start to clean up and the river has some push to it. 2000 is often a low water cut-off for rafters.
3000-5000: Medium, the entrance to BD opens up nicely for rafts, waves and holes getting big
5000-7000: Medium-high, Everything is padded out, but expect some big holes and waves. Commercial rafts start flipping more often.
7000-15,000: BIG, Consider Boulder Drop class V and other rapids a half step harder. Except at the bottom of this range the Mercy Chute is usually the best option
15,000+: Really BIG! Big water, very fast. S**t happens on the Sky at these levels. Ask locals. Plenty of stories abound. Run only if you're a strong paddler with IV-V big water skills.

More info on flows in the run description below.


  Fun Facts

The place to meet other Seattle-area boaters (paddle and be home for dinner). SkyFest has been held in yearís past, but there are no current plans to hold the festival. Although the Low Flow is 1000 cfs, boaters may be found regularly making runs through boulder drop and other parts of the river all the way down to 400!


   Run Description [Season: Year Round]

This run is one of the most paddled runs in the State. Read Shane Turnbull's highly detailed description in the Bennett Book. With boatabl flows year-round, this run can have people on it every weekend. It has been run as high as 85,000, It gets run above 25,000 more routinely, but if you are just getting your feet wet flows over 5,000 will feel very intimidating and over 15,000 is experts only.

At flows below 3,000 people generally put-in on the South Fork above Cable Drop, a short Class III rapid. There are fun playspots that develop throughout this drop, so keep an eye out. Below here the river splits around a large rock/ gravel bar. Most people go left and dodge under the old-growth spanning the channel. Stay hard left and you will slip right under it. Be careful at higher flows.

When the Sky is running above 3,000 cfs most people put on the North Fork of the Sky in Index. It has some nice mixed boulder fields, rock gardens, and a few gravel bars. Boofs and playwaves can be found at most levels also.

Below the confluence of the N. and S. forks at the HWY 2 bridge (you can also put in here if you are so inclined) there are more fun rapids with generous pools and long rock gardens with beautiful views of the Gunn Range and Mt. Baring. The first rapid below the bridge is straight forward and forgiving. Run right for the best waves. After the next pool the river bends left and then right through some boulders. This rapid is called Garbage. Stay with the main flow and Butter The Biscuit at lower flows (perfect slide rock). Around the next corner is Anderson Hole. It's a short, straightforward class III at low flows, but it forms a good sized hole that can be nasty at higher flows. Run right or left, the route on the left is easier and at flows under 2,000 a surgey fun pourover hole forms.

In the distance you will see some large boulders looming and the river drops out of sight. This is "Boulder Drop", the long, complex Class IV you will want to scout if you donít know the lines. Scout on the right, portage left or right (left is easier along the road). The lines through Boulder Drop change with different river flows, so if you are unfamiliar, SCOUT.

You can break this long rapid into three defined segments. Most paddlers enter it in the main channel on River Right, which affords two basic choices. Most go far right. This makes it easy to eddy out on the right in "The Bubble Pool", above the Picket Fence.

The second part of the rapid is called the "Picket Fence". At flows under 4,000 you can do the Airplane Turn, The Needle or Nedís Needle. Between 4-8,000 Nedís is the most aggressive line. Paddle hard. The Needle is a hair easier, but a bigger move. Above 8,000 the Mercy Chute is the best bet. I have seen many different lines run at many different levels, but these are pretty standard lines. Above 15,000, be very careful in this rapid. The Picket Fence itself becomes a monstrous hole with a horrible backwash. Be warned. Expect massive holes at high water.

Chutes and drops are run on the left as well. Choose your route carefully. You just may wind up stuffed behind a rock, or find some unsuspecting hole that'll grab your stern and suck you back in. The diversity of Boulder Drop is impressive. Formidable at high water, technical at lower flows with linked moves and big ferries possible. A great rapid aspiring creekers should get familiar with!

Once you go past House Rock, the last feature to contend with has been referred to as "The Ledge" and more commonly Ledge Wave. See Ledge Wave in all it's glory at 8,000 when rafts have about a 50/50 shot. Take care not to flip above the ledge. Getting washed over the last pitch of Boulder Drop, especially at flows under 3,000 can cause serious injury. It's a jumbled mess of rocks and several paddlers have been injured here by washing over the ledge upside down.

Below Boulder Drop there's a few really great rapids. Directly below is The Weir, which becomes a really big surf wave at 15,000+, but can be a sticky ledge at lower levels. Use caution here at high water. Run left of center down the tongue, but be aware of the sieve on the far left.

Below here is Bonsai!! which has some good waves and holes, including loveable "Lefty". That huge boulder in the center just upstream of Lefty makes a HUGE HOLE AT HIGHWATER (Above 10K).

A shallow rock garden feeds towards Lunch Hole, which sits against the R. Left bank. This hole can be mean and surprisingly retentive roughly between 3,000-4,500 cfs. Swimmers can be coughing up water after being on the menu. It doesn't happen often, but when does it's near drowning ugly, so watch people here. This rapid is named because traditionally rafters stop on the sandy beach on R. Right.

The next rapid is a real gem and perfectly named: Aquagasm. This roller coaster ride is big, fun and has some awesome hits. The lowest wave/ hole can flip rafts around 4-7,000 so beware. It's typically been good surf between 4-6K, but changes every year. The general line is to start right, drifting into the center, but watch out for a big hole that forms at higher flows called Pat's Plunge. It can be wicked. Aquagasm is always a blast.

Finally, there is one more boulder garden before you get to the Split Rock wave. Decent eddy service behind the split rock on river left, but as levels drop so does the quality of the wave and the eddy. Takeout at the bridge below, after running Railroad rapid (left of center or right of center), or at the actual Split Rock takeout. The Split Rock surf wave and actual Split Rock takeout are separated by a few hundred yards of flat water.

   

*Boulder Drop at a level for class III boaters not ready for class IV; the level seen in this video (shot around 600-700cfs) is friendly and has some great eddy hoppin fun! Also, the boulders exposed are quite the sight! The bottom of BD is the crux at this level and is easily portaged if you're unsure of your skill.*
[flash width=425 height=344]http://www.youtube.com/v/SO9OKvi_UWE[/flash]



Media
   tnSize:
px

Images    tnSize:
px



Who's Watching Upcoming Trips on this RunTrip Reports
a_bomb Send Private Message AaronS Send Private Message abergmann Send Private Message
Adrian Send Private Message Alicia Lycan Send Private Message Alphacyber Send Private Message
Aquaholic Send Private Message arnobarno Send Private Message Arrow6 Send Private Message
ashleygoesdisco Send Private Message Aukija Send Private Message Baker Send Private Message
bigh2o Send Private Message Blair Send Private Message BlueBerryBoofer Send Private Message
BrianBuckley Send Private Message briandunnington Send Private Message BrianP Send Private Message
brig Send Private Message BRoss Send Private Message Burger Send Private Message
caitlin Send Private Message carpealldiem Send Private Message cbishop1 Send Private Message
chipmaney Send Private Message clyness Send Private Message commander fun Send Private Message
Connor Send Private Message cooperfitch Send Private Message Courtney Send Private Message
dagger3000 Send Private Message danpen Send Private Message dave Send Private Message
DaveH Send Private Message davidl Send Private Message dblanchard Send Private Message
delanok Send Private Message Elijah Send Private Message Ellingferd Send Private Message
erik.siegling Send Private Message Fenix747 Send Private Message fiddleyak Send Private Message
Fish Send Private Message fredwithanf Send Private Message Fry1982 Send Private Message
GarrettS Send Private Message GHannam Send Private Message haenisch024 Send Private Message
Hilneevel Send Private Message huckin harms Send Private Message Hulkster Send Private Message
Hunter Send Private Message irenen Send Private Message iron monkey Send Private Message
James Send Private Message japele Send Private Message JayN Send Private Message
jblum Send Private Message JCKeck1 Send Private Message Jed Hawkes Send Private Message
jefecito Send Private Message Jeff Send Private Message jella Send Private Message
jerryclayross Send Private Message Jetters Send Private Message jfer202 Send Private Message
jhoff Send Private Message Joel_Werdell Send Private Message JoesKayak Send Private Message
jon! Send Private Message Jordy Send Private Message joshcrossman Send Private Message
jP Send Private Message Jule Send Private Message justin Send Private Message
jwcook Send Private Message jzgold Send Private Message Kaelan Send Private Message
KBfree Send Private Message kebm1979 Send Private Message Kiren Send Private Message
kirkrorrer Send Private Message Kiwi Send Private Message knarfks Send Private Message
kswigart Send Private Message kurle Send Private Message Leland Send Private Message
Logan Send Private Message Looksha Send Private Message lowell.m Send Private Message
LReif Send Private Message lubes Send Private Message Luthanick Send Private Message
Mark Send Private Message Mark47n Send Private Message Matt Haverly Send Private Message
matta Send Private Message mcolgin Send Private Message megspk Send Private Message
mikefromTX Send Private Message mikenash Send Private Message MN Mike Send Private Message
mnsinger Send Private Message mokelumnekid Send Private Message Monk Send Private Message
mowhitewater Send Private Message mprussak Send Private Message msims Send Private Message
Nanook Send Private Message nibbler Send Private Message Nick Send Private Message
not-very-clever Send Private Message ODarrow Send Private Message otterend Send Private Message
otterpop Send Private Message outdoorjunkie88 Send Private Message PaddleGirl Send Private Message
pete.d Send Private Message pottert Send Private Message Pstan Send Private Message
rayw Send Private Message Rick & Pam Send Private Message riveratc Send Private Message
riverfanatik Send Private Message rivmiquiv Send Private Message rmkerrigan Send Private Message
robcobb Send Private Message rockarolla Send Private Message rokmnky Send Private Message
rorosherman Send Private Message royhprum Send Private Message Ryan Send Private Message
Sam_Graftton Send Private Message schizoid Send Private Message scottrichardson Send Private Message
septimus prime Send Private Message Shaun Send Private Message skim Send Private Message
smcboating Send Private Message snowplower Send Private Message Steven M Send Private Message
sub_merged Send Private Message surfrivers Send Private Message SYOTR Send Private Message
Texas Dave Send Private Message thad2000 Send Private Message the_NW Send Private Message
ThrowYaMittsUp Send Private Message tiziak Send Private Message tkelley Send Private Message
tlleight Send Private Message Tnick93 Send Private Message Tobin Send Private Message
TomMarley Send Private Message tradguy2 Send Private Message Trevor_Kazen Send Private Message
turtlepower Send Private Message up4air Send Private Message water wacko Send Private Message
WhiteWaterWheat Send Private Message Wiggins Send Private Message willsn Send Private Message
willyc Send Private Message wolovekg Send Private Message wwaddict Send Private Message
xanthopb Send Private Message Yotes Send Private Message
Trip NameTrip Date
Trip Report TitleDate
Saturday Sky12/23/2006
Hitched up my Big Boy Pan...1/21/2007
Winter Wonderland on the ...12/20/2008


Beta Trail    
SubmissionBeta Submitted BySubmitted On
jP's 8/15/2012 Run SubmissionjP8/15/2012 9:40:00 AM
jP's 4/2/2012 Run SubmissionjP4/2/2012 10:05:00 PM
James's 2/23/2012 Run SubmissionJames2/23/2012 8:01:00 AM
jP's 2/17/2012 Run SubmissionjP2/17/2012 5:27:00 PM
Blair's 3/11/2011 Run SubmissionBlair3/11/2011 8:15:00 AM
Blair's 3/11/2011 Run SubmissionBlair3/11/2011 12:09:00 AM
water wacko's 2/1/2011 Run Submissionwater wacko2/1/2011 8:51:00 AM
water wacko's 1/5/2010 Run Submissionwater wacko1/5/2010 11:38:00 PM
jP's 9/17/2009 Run SubmissionjP9/17/2009 11:11:00 AM
James's 4/9/2007 Run SubmissionJames4/9/2007 8:26:00 PM

// Home / River Details In total there are 56 Active Users online, 56 Guest(s) and 0 Member(s)