Little Falls Gauge and River Height

The gauge at Little Falls, upstream of Chain Bridge, is a good indicator of the impact rain and snow melt will have on river conditions. The higher the gauge, the higher the river goes, and the more unsafe it is to be on the river. Higher gauge readings also are a guide to how much current there will be, as well as how much debris will be in the water (of all sizes and varieties). Rising water along the river bansk and flooded streams liberates grounded debris transporting it into the river.

USGA Little Falls river gauge- Current Readings

The general formula for reading the gauge height is:

3-4 Ft. Normal river conditions.
5 Ft. “Action Stage” at Little Falls Guage. Current picks up. Minor “swirlies” just down stream of ¬†Hens & Chickens.
6 Ft. Larger swirlies, forceful current, noticeable debris possible. Small boats unadvised and large boats by experienced crews only.
7 Ft. Rowers are advised not to launch. Strong, swift currents, large debris to be expected.
10+ Ft.  Flood stage.
12 Ft. Moderate Flood Stage
14 Ft. Major Flood Stage

Little Falls Gauge Historical Data by Date