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Site 4 Dagger Falls Page 53 D7 N44 31.774 W115 17.154 ELV 7000

By capt.ed - Posted on 10 March 2011


Dagger Falls, Velvet Falls, Tappen Falls, Veil Falls, and Forge Creek Falls
Rafters and kayakers can locate Dagger Falls 20 miles northwest of Stanley, ID; from Scenic Route 21, turn onto Forest Road #579 and drive approximately 10 miles; at the junction for Forest Road #568, bear right and head 13 miles to the launch ramp located at the base of Dagger Falls; visitors should note that access is easiest from early June through early September

This set of cataracts is designed for water enthusiasts and is recommended only for experienced kayakers and rafters or visitors on a guided whitewater trip. Found along the Middle Fork Salmon River, also dubbed “The River of No Return,” these falls possess Class III – V rapids. For those ready for adventure, however, the river and various falls provide visitors with awe-inspiring scenery.

Dagger Falls is situated on Boundary Creek at an elevation of 5,800 feet. With several cascades, Dagger Falls also includes a fish ladder built to assist migrating salmon. Velvet Falls tumbles downstream five and one-half miles from Dagger Falls. The deceptively large cataract spans most of the Middle Fork Salmon River and is most easily accessed by raft. However, it is rumored that Velvet Falls can be located on land by hiking along a rough trail. Tappen Falls waits for river enthusiasts nearly 50 miles downstream of Velvet Falls. Located in the Frank Church River of No Return Wilderness, Tappen Falls is characterized by a string of four Class III rapids that tosses visitors along the river for approximately 1 mile. Continuing further into the Frank Church River of No Return Wilderness, locate Veil Falls near the 80-mile mark of raft trips beginning at Dagger Falls. After running Veil Rapids, park your boat on the shoreline and hike to Veil Falls. This cataract, running along Waterfall Creek at the union of two canyons, tumbles nearly 1,000 feet. Forge Creek Falls occurs further downstream, but topographic maps indicate that this cataract is inaccessible.