Class: III - IV
Season: During the Wet (September to March)
Time: 20 min
Shuttle: 10 min
Character: Three open technical rapids and 800m of tree dodging
Suits: Mid-high volume kayaks - beginer to advanced
Alligator Creek is part
of Bowling Green Bay National Park.
Access is off the highway just south of Townsville.
After four solid days of rain, Mt Elliot was fueling this usually passive creek nicely.
From the Alligator Creek
picnic area, walk up the boardwalk next to the creek to the main swimming beach.
The big pointy rock immediately on your left as you hit the beach needs to have
water lapping around it (no sand) for this to go safely.
Put in, paddle up through the two pools past the lookout on river left. From here, carry your boat up past the "tail-flip" drop to the big eddy/pool above the "S-bend" rapid and put in.
From here it's about 20 seconds of intense paddling through the "s-bend" to set up for the "tail-flip." Run the "S bend" however you like but usually the "tail flip" needs to be run from just left of the centre rock directly towards the lookout platform to avoid a nasty corkscrew from the right and potential smashed head/teeth/elbow on the left side of the shute.
When I ran this I was able to do consistent tail stands in my 3D without even trying. (experienced the smashed elbow on the last run- be careful.) If you swim the "S-bend," there's good eddy's left and right.
From here, enjoy the eddy's and pools till the trees narrow the channel. Now have a bit of fun running slalom around the trees and boulders for the bottom section. Good luck finding the right channel on your first go... Lots of fun here and good for practicing eddying in/out and reverse ferry glides.
Pull out where the blocked off National Parks maintenance road crosses the creek and walk back to the picnic area for your next go. Best to get an eyeball of this spot on your drive in (on the left before you cross the side creeks inside the gates) so you don't miss it. Wild!
If the side creeks are running
at the causeways it's a fair chance there's enough water in Alligator to run
at least some of this section. I recon the rest of the river from Cockatoo Creek
to Devils Pool (above this section) would go at similar levels but haven't had
the chance to walk up that far with my boat yet.
Putting In: Paddle and walk up from the main swimming beach
Taking Out: National Parks maintenance causeway
Camping: Internet or self register at National Parks campsite
Entry Date: 27th June 2006
Comments: A great fun place to come if the water's up and you're in Townsville and you don't want to have to drive miles.
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