Floating Smith River in Montana

Discussion in 'Trip Planning' started by DrNed, Oct 16, 2016.

  1. Jackson

    Jackson I like to go outside.

    Messages:
    800
    Location:
    Salt Lake City
    Have you run that section? I noticed your profile picture looks a lot like a kayak on Quake Lake.
     
  2. AustinCronnelly

    AustinCronnelly Butte Rat

    Messages:
    111
    You are right, that is me on Quake lake but I've never kayaked anything that wasn't flat water.
     
  3. AustinCronnelly

    AustinCronnelly Butte Rat

    Messages:
    111
    Here is an idea of the type of scenery along the Jeff. This is the Twin to Silver Star Section. Photo taken from Hell's Canyon.
    [​IMG][/URL][/IMG]
    Here is an idea of the type of scenery found along the Jeff. This is the Twin Bridges to Silver Star section, photo taken from Hells Canyon. Those are the Tobacco Root mountains in the distance.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
    Artemus and Joey like this.
  4. pinecone

    pinecone Member

    Messages:
    65
    I grew up day floating the Blackfoot and Bitteroot rivers but it's been so long I'm probably not much help. The Blackfoot we used our big family raft on because it had more rocks and rapids and the Bitteroot was a very lazy 3 hour tube ride on the section we did right out of Missoula. I'll be putting in for Smith river permits this year as well!
     
    DrNed likes this.
  5. DrNed

    DrNed The mountains are calling and I must go

    Messages:
    708
    Location:
    Utah
    I was just watching some Blackfoot videos on youtube - it looks like it could be an alternative if the Smith permits don't pan out.

    BigSkyFishing.com says it's 110 miles long, which suggests it may be possible to do a multi day trip on.

    What do you think of the Blackfoot as a potential 4-6 day float trip?

    Thanks!
     
  6. pinecone

    pinecone Member

    Messages:
    65
    ooh I would love that! those pictures are amazing I am missing home lately
     
  7. Kelley

    Kelley Member

    Messages:
    11
    Location:
    Montana

    I floated it middle of July this year. It was wonderful, although fishing was bad. By this time of year the water was low, super warm and full of algae. We floated single man pontoon boats, and the only time we had to "drag" was when someone didn't read the river right and it was less then 10 ft. For the food storage we used 3 UrSacks and 1 bear can. We are already planning for next years trip!

    I live in the Bitterroot Valley, and while the Bitterroot is a blue ribbon fishing stream, if your after a multi day trip this isn't your river. While you could go multi days, you have to take off the river and stay in a hotel or at one of the many outfitter lodges. There's only 1 campground right at the confluence.
     
  8. oldie but goodie

    oldie but goodie Member

    Messages:
    23
    Location:
    Montana
    Why not float the Wild and Scenic Missouri River here in Montana...Three options from 42 miles to the entire 150 miles..

    I have done the Smith in May..2 nights on the river...Cold and windy..Dress very warm if you go...And there are definitely bears..
     
    River likes this.
  9. DrNed

    DrNed The mountains are calling and I must go

    Messages:
    708
    Location:
    Utah
    I've looked into the Missouri and its not off the table yet. Do you have some sources you can point me to - maps, images/videos, and off river sites & activities? The only images I've found are all the same stretch of the White Cliffs area. Maybe I haven't searched hard enough, but I just haven't found any substantial info so if you can point me to any sources that would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.
     
  10. DrNed

    DrNed The mountains are calling and I must go

    Messages:
    708
    Location:
    Utah
    Good to know. Thanks!
     
  11. oldie but goodie

    oldie but goodie Member

    Messages:
    23
    Location:
    Montana
    Here is a link to a website owned by one of my best friends who had a guide business on the river for 20 years...Also, if you wanted to personally call him I am sure he would be more than happy to answer any question you might have...
    http://www.uppermissouri.com/padinfo.htm

    I have done the entire 150 miles 3 times and other shorter options another 3 or 4...Great trip..
     
  12. DrNed

    DrNed The mountains are calling and I must go

    Messages:
    708
    Location:
    Utah
    Good info - thanks!

    Here's my list, in order of preference - comments are appreciated.

    1. Smith River
    2. Upper Missouri River
    3. North Platte River
    4. Green River ABC
    5. Green River Lakes
     
  13. DrNed

    DrNed The mountains are calling and I must go

    Messages:
    708
    Location:
    Utah
    If you were to do only 2 of the 3 sections, which two would you do - 1&2 or 2&3 - and why? Thanks
     
  14. Kelley

    Kelley Member

    Messages:
    11
    Location:
    Montana

    Our permits are in. Waiting on March 2nd now, fingers crossed!
     
  15. DrNed

    DrNed The mountains are calling and I must go

    Messages:
    708
    Location:
    Utah
    Me too!
     
  16. Kelley

    Kelley Member

    Messages:
    11
    Location:
    Montana
    Today's the day!! Impatiently waiting for results to be posted!!!
     
  17. Nick

    Nick Post 'em if you got 'em!

    Messages:
    11,542
    Location:
    Utah
    I just checked and I did not get a permit. :(
     
  18. Kelley

    Kelley Member

    Messages:
    11
    Location:
    Montana

    Boo!!

    I started checking from my phone (several of us put in) and so far 2 nos and then the site and my phone decided they dont like each other anymore. So the last 2 will have to wait til I get home.
     
  19. DrNed

    DrNed The mountains are calling and I must go

    Messages:
    708
    Location:
    Utah
    Same here - No.

    I would be curious to know how many resident vs nonresident permits are given.
    Meaning, do they tilt it to favor the residents, but collect less fees or do they tilt
    towards the nonresidents and collect more fees, but that's just the cynical side
    of me. I thought to myself, "I'm bringing 15 people at $60 each that's going to be
    almost a thousand bucks - surely they'll choose me!"

    I downloaded the results from last year - they had 27k+ permit requests and and
    they gave out about 1200. I think that is what is meant by "slim to none."
     
  20. Nick

    Nick Post 'em if you got 'em!

    Messages:
    11,542
    Location:
    Utah
    I would be surprised if they factor in resident vs. non-resident at all. I don't think any other rivers do that, but then again most are run by the federal gov, not the state. Have you heard that they specifically factor residency in for the Smith?
     
Loading...