The Route: Source of Confidence Expedition

Overview Map of Route

The ultimate source of the fourth longest river in the world is Brower’s Spring, elevation 9,000 feet, on the southwestern edge of Montana along the Idaho border. The expedition will start just over the border in Idaho. We’ll trek to Brower’s Spring, where Hell Roaring Creek flows down into the Centennial Valley. Then we’ll hike along Hell Roaring Creek until there is enough water to use our inflatable raft. We will paddle Hell Roaring Creek to its confluence with Red Rock Creek, and canoe the length of Red Rock River, which flows into Clark Canyon Reservoir. From here we will get onto the Beaverhead River outside of Dillon, Montana, and paddle to it’s connecting point with the Jefferson River just outside of Twin Bridges, Montana.

The Jefferson flows 83 miles to Three Forks, Montana, where it connects with two other rivers, the Gallatin and the Madison, to form the headwaters of the Missouri River. We will canoe the entire length of the Missouri River paddling through Montana, North and South Dakota, Nebraska, Iowa, Kansas, and Missouri. The Missouri River and Mississippi River meet just north of St. Louis, Missouri. At this junction we will switch from a tandem canoe to solo canoes to descend the Mississippi River, paddling along the Missouri and Illinois border, along Kentucky, into Tennessee, Arkansas, Mississippi, and ending in Louisiana at the Gulf of Mexico. Total mileage for the fourth longest river is 3,902 miles. Though by the time we arrive at the Gulf of Mexico, we will have paddled well over 4,000 miles by paddling into bays along the river, going to shore for lunch breaks, and practicing our canoe ballet skills just to pass the time.

The exact mileage would be difficult to calculate, if not for current technology! Using a spot tracker device you will be able to follow along with us as we canoe this incredible river system. You will know where we start each morning, how many miles we paddle, and where we camp each night. This is one of the features that will help you experience the expedition alongside us. Regular video, photographic, and written updates from our expedition including our educational curriculum and activities will make you feel like you are on the river with Alyce and Lisa. We can’t wait to have you join our expedition! Paddle +



  1. Jim Meade
    Posted June 7, 2016 at 10:29 pm | Permalink

    Hope to see you when you get to Great Falls. Northwestern Energy provided gas money for “free” portages for several years, but have stopped doing that. Montana River Outfitters are now doing portages to either the Carter Ferry or to Ft. Benton. If I’m available I will be happy to run you and your canoe & gear around Gt. Falls to resupply groceries or whatever else you might need. You’ll also need Wag Bags and BLM River Maps of “The Upper Missouri River Monument” I’ll also be glad to take you to the premier Lewis & Clark Interpretive Center here in Gt. Falls. This center covers the ENTIRE Lewis & Clark trip (there a numerous centers along the river but most only talk about their neghborhood. 406-727-2762

  2. Posted July 20, 2016 at 4:57 pm | Permalink

    Good job gals !
    Met you in the Missouri Breaks section – we were very impressed with your journey.
    Good luck may the current and wind be with you.
    Will try to follow your trip.
    Take care,
    Roland Ring-Jarvi
    Anoka, Mn

  3. Posted July 20, 2016 at 4:58 pm | Permalink

    Stay in touch and good luck with weather and serendipity!!

  4. Dan and Kay Swihart
    Posted September 19, 2016 at 11:07 am | Permalink

    We appreciated your visit to Yankton and Chief White Crane Campground on 9/16. You are doing an amazing trip. Thank you for spending time with us and giving the boy scouts an impromtu presentation.

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