Odd you should mention that area. I was down there about six weeks ago. Went to visit the Grand Canyon but had to take some time and explore the surrounding areas, since I hadden’t been to AZ since I was a kid. Though I didn’t paddle I, like most paddlers, can’t help but stop to take a look at the rivers when convenient. The part of Oak Creek I saw was in Oak Creek canyon flowing toward Sedona. You drive along it when you go to Sedona from Flagstaff. Its a beautiful little creek up there - Indian Gardens is worth a stop to take a look. The upper part didn’t really look paddlable - though perhaps a real good paddler could handle it if the water was high. There was a small park - Slippery Rock, I think it was called - that might be the beginning of the paddlable part of Oak Creek.
The Verde River in Cottonwood looked navigable enough but not particularly enticing. It was small, flat, winding, and muddy from where I saw it - the city park in Cottonwood. If you are into such things there was a winery up in Jerome that led to an absolutly spectacularly scenic drive. (I advise against taking a trailer up there though…)
I don’t know if you live around there or what, so perhaps none of this is news to you. If you really like wine, it might be a fun paddle, but from what I saw the Verde didn’t really look like a “destination” to me. There are so many spectacular rivers in the N. Az and southern Utah that I’d be much more inclined to hit - the Green, Colorado, San Juan, Dirty Devil, etc. I hear that with the ongoing drought in the area that parts of the Colorado in Glen Canyon starting at Hite (that were flooded by L. Powell and raised the ire of so many river rats back in the 70s) are reemerging and recovering. That would be a sight to see… a riparian Resurrection isn’t something that we see every day.