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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

Outdoors blog

Paddler shares Hangman Creek scouting report

PADDLING -- Spokane paddler and guidebook author Dan Hansen couldn't find a scouting report for a stretch of Hangman Creek at high water, so he set out  by foot on Sunday to find out for himself.

Hansen hiked the 10-mile stretch from the Qualchan Historical Monument site downstream to Valley Chapel Road and found excellent paddling water -- with a few big rapids to be aware of -- at a flow of 3,500 cubic feet per second.  Hansen figures skilled paddlers could negotiate that stretch of Hangman Creek down to about half of that flow.

"This time of year, Hangman Creek generally flows at less than 200 cubic feet per second. But rain on snow can make the water spike, presenting an opportunity for paddlers," Hansen said.
When last week's rain-on-snow event caused the creek's flow more than double to 4,000 cfs in just a few hours the evening of Jan. 13-14, the river was particularly dangerous as it spewed ice chunks up on to the banks and into fields.  Two days later, it was muddy by good for paddling.  In a few days, the rush will be over.

See Dan Hansen's Facebook page video report of Hangman Creek at 3,500 cfs.

Rich Landers
Rich Landers joined The Spokesman-Review in 1977. He is the Outdoors editor for the Sports Department writing and photographing stories about hiking, hunting, fishing, boating, conservation, nature and wildlife and related topics.

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