Class: IV (p)
Time: 6 - 8 hours
Length: 7 km
Level: If it is just deep enough to paddle then it is at a good level.
Gauge: Bridge over the creek on the Alpine Way
Shuttle: 7 km easy bitumen
Character: Narrow, shallow and steep
Suits: Short creek boats
The Leatherbarrel is an amazing river and as much intense as it is amazing. You paddle away from any roads and the walk out is horrific, so any group attempting this should have enough gear for a night out; just in case.
This river is also narrow, shallow and has hardly any eddies, so small teams (4 max) is recommended.
Because of the steep nature of the surrounding country, there is a fair amount tree jams and strainers. This and the lack of eddies means that a sharp eye and continual scouting is essential. The river is a series of drops linked with continous rapids and one hour long portage.
The river can take a long time, depending on levels etc, and you are still left with the Murray river to paddle, this is much easier and quite relaxing after the intensity of the Leatherbarrel, see the guide for the Upper Murray (Above Tom Groggin) for the last bit of the paddle. But in short it is a series of bouncy rapids and long flat sections through beautiful granite country.
Jarred Atkin October 24, 2010 - A video of the trip. Awesome river, but a long day.
Boris April 15 2012 - I'm hearing ya when ya write about log infested, but when we did it in 1995 it was not as bad for logs as it looks on that vid. Looks like about the same level.
Paddled it twice that year, (I lived in Khancoban for 6 years owned a Whitewater Rafting Company) the second time it was a bit higher and a heap more pant poohing.
The Upper Khancoban Creek goes alright as well not the lower milkie bit.. drive in off the Cabramurra Road. Keep lookin! cheers Boris.
Putting In: Coming from Jindabyne, head west past Thredbo and across Dead Horse Gap. About 10 km past DHG you will cross over a bridge on a small creek, there is a car park with toilets there, this is the put in.
Taking Out: Keep driving west until you get to Tom Groggin, turn left into the campsite area and drive as far upstream as you can manage, this is the get out point.
Map: Thredbo (8524-N) 1:50000
Camping: Tom Groggin is an excellent place to stay, with really nice secluded campsites.
Entry Date: 3 June 2003
Verified Date: 25t May 2006
Verified by: Shaun McManamny
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