Colt Killed Creek (White Sand Creek): Colt Creek Bridge to the Crooked Fork
Colt Killed Creek
Colt Killed Creek is a 12 mile run through a pristine, roadless canyon.
Go prepared for a full day on the river in a remote, wilderness setting.
From the put in to Storm Creek Pack Bridge expect continuous class
IV whitewater. From Storm Creek down things start to ease
up, with the last few miles being a class II swiftwater cruise. Wood can
bee a serious hazard on this run so don't run any drops blind. As
noted in the flows section, the run increases in difficulty as flow increases.
"Here we wer compelled to kill a colt for our men & Selves to eat for a want of
meat & we named the South fork Colt Killed Creek and this river we call
Flathead River (Lochsa). The mountains which we passed to day much worst than
yesterday the last excessively bad & thickly strowed with falling
timber & Pine Spruc fur hackmatak & Tamerack, steep & stoney our men
and horses much fatigued." - Meriwether Lewis. September 14, 1805
There is additional whitewater upstream from the put in on upper Colt
Killed Creek (Class V), and Big Sand Creek (class V), a tributary of
upper Colt Killed. For more information on these runs, see links to
American Whitewater in the Planning Tools section.
Exit Hiway 12 at Lochsa Lodge / Powell Ranger Station, and take FS
road 102 for 2.2 miles to the bridge at the confluence of Colt Killed
Creek and the Crooked Fork. This is the take out, and
the source of the Lochsa River.
Ambrose, Stephen.Undaunted Courage:
Meriwether Lewis, Thomas Jefferson, and the Opening of the American West. Simon & Schuster, 1997.
Devoto, Bernard.The Journals of Lewis and Clark.
Mariner Books, 1997.
Egan, Timothy.The Big Burn:
Teddy Roosevelt and the Fire that Saved America. Haughton Milflin Harcourt, 2009.
Hamilton, Ladd.Snow Bound.
Washington State University Press, 1997
Josephy, Alvin M.The Nez Perce Indians
and the Opening of the Northwest. Mariner Books, 1997.
Moore, Bud.The Lochsa Story:
Land Ethics in the Bitterroot Mountains. Mountain Press Publishing Company, 1996.
Titone, Julie.Small River To Be Known As Colt Killed Creek
. Spokesman Review [Spokane] 8 May 1995, Online ed., NATION/WORLD sec.
Season and Flow Information:
The season starts when the road to the put in is clear of snow. This can vary widely, but it generally doesn't happen until late June, when Savage Pass (6,160') and all the shady corners finally melt. Stories abound of boaters getting skunked trying to get into Colt Killed. The neareast online gage is on the Lochsa near Lowell. When the Lochsa is above 4,000 cfs, Colt Killed jumps up a notch in difficulty. Minimum level is around 2,500 cfs. While there is no official correlation, 4,000 cfs on the Lochsa equates to roughly 1,200 cfs on Colt Killed. This is just a rough, eye ball estimate.
NOAA Snowtel Data - Lolo Pass NOAA River Flow Forcast - Lochsa Near Lowell USGS Gage - Lochsa Near Lowell Lochsa Lodge Recreation.gov USGS Topo Map (CalTopo) Big Sand Creek: American Whitewater Upper Colt Killed Creek: American Whitewater Lower Colt Killed Creek: American Whitewater
in a larger map.
Copyright Todd Hoffman 2016 - All Rights Reserved