The team starts at the
The run starts in the forest, but quickly transitions to high desert.
The first mile is the best of Deer Creek, full of non-stop class III
action that gives it a class IV feel.
Ron Rodgers runs a typical blind but not terribly hard boulder garden.
Wood is a major hazard on Deer Creek.
Feeling like we'd made good
progress, we took a moment to
look at our map.
According to our best guess we were near some private land and pushed
on through Ishi Falls.
Austin Nickell runs the trademark drop of Deer Creek; Ishi Falls.
Alex Cousins boofs into Ishi Falls.
Below Ishi Falls we cruised through one more short section of good
whitewater before pulling over on the right and camping above what must
be "Double Drop"
and Alex cut some firewood at camp.
The beauty of portage free overnight trips, good food!
The section below our camp started off busy with Double Drop, which we
snuck on the right, and was followed by several fun rapids.
Shannamar Dewey runs one with a nice view on the morning of our second
Only too soon the rapids mellow out and Deer Creek takes on more of a
class II character, but the scenery is sublime.
Too soon the gradient and
scenery tapered off and we were in the paddle out. Putting our heads
down and paddling saw us at the Leininger Road Bridge in an hour and a
half, where our vehicles were parked that day thanks to Steve McCabe, a
great shuttle driver: 530-519-1040. The shuttle is very worthwhile both
to alleviate driving time, and because vandalism is a common problem
for cars left at the bridge overnight. We had 600cfs on the
gauge, and I'd consider
500-1,000 to be ideal, with the river very
possible but harder at higher flows.
Take out: From Chico, head North on Highway 99 to a right turn onto
Vina Road. Follow Vina until a left onto Leininger Road and
follow to the bridge
over Deer Creek. To be absolutely legal, park past the faded spray
painted line 200' away from the bridge.
Put-in: Return to Highway 99 and make a left, heading South to a left
turn onto Keefer Road, following that until a left onto Cohasset Road.
Follow Cohasset Road for a long time and through some rough terrain
(High Clearance needed). Eventually make an unmarked right turn
downhill onto Ponderosa Way. There is a spray painted rock that says
Deer Creek but no sign for Ponderosa Way. Follow Ponderosa Way to the