Buller / Doctor's Creek

Info

Class: 
II+
Portage?: 
No
Level: 
30-150 cumecs
Gauge: 

Tasman District Council flow phone 03 544 3393, flow at Longford - also www.tdc.govt/nz/riverflow.asp

Gradient: 
3.0m/km
Length: 
5.5km
Time: 
1-3 hours
Put in: 
Across paddocks on the south side of Doctors Creek.
Take out: 
Mangles/Buller confluence.
Shuttle: 
5.5 km
Maps: 
M29
Character: 
Big volume, single braid, great eddies.
Hot tip: 
Something for everyone.

The era of rodeo kayaking has turned the Doctors Creek run on the Buller River into one of the river’s ‘regular’ runs. No longer just the domain of beginner trips and kayak courses, its sharp eddy lines and good ferry glides interspersed with rock-splat walls and cartwheel spots attract as many gods and goddesses as neophytes.

During one frenetic day during the summer of ‘98 I counted over 70 people on the section. Numbers were boosted for the celebratory fiftieth birthday run by hungover kayaking deity Mick Hopkinson. I wonder how many people and what sort of boats we will have out there at Mick’s sixtieth. For those concerned with aesthetics, the road, even though it runs alongside the river for the length of the run, is well-hidden by the forested river-edge.

To get to the TAKE OUT: the Mangles picnic area is four kilometres north of Murchison on SH6. Park in the picnic area immediately after the bridge. To get to the PUT IN: continue north for 5.5 kilometres to 50 metres before the Doctors Creek bridge. There is parking on the Buller river side of the road. Walk across the paddock to the river and leave all gates as you found them.

History: 
Credits: 
Graham Charles
NZ Whitewater 4th Edition 2006: 
p140

Comments

anthony.h's picture

be carefull at the get out. a friend jumped off a rock in to river and became pinned on log under water for quite some time, next person might not be so lucky. good run though